TSH RESOURCES BHD expects its 14MW renewable energy biomass power plant in Sabah to be commissioned in July to generate annual profit of RM8mil to RM10mil through sales of power to Sabah Electricity Sdn Bhd (SESB).
According to TSH executive director Lim Fook Hin, TSH is the first local company to sell renewable energy – from oil palm waste – to SESB, which is 80% owned by Tenaga Nasional Bhd.
“We are selling up to 10MW at 21.25 sen per kilowatt hour (KWh) through a 21-year renewable energy purchase agreement (REPA) to SESB,” he told reporters at a media briefing in Petaling Jaya yesterday. Independent power producers using diesel sell electricity to SESB at 36 sen per KWh.
TSH Group has to date invested RM45mil in its palm bio-integrated complex – the world's first – in Kunak, Sabah, which is capable of processing oil palm fresh fruit bunches into biomass power, and palm oil mill effluent into pulp and paper products as well as bio-gas energy.
TSH was awarded a RM1.8mil grant by COGEN3, a European Union-Asean Programme, for the biomass power plant. Coming on stream by the end of next year will be TSH's wood-based 8MW biomass plant located at subsidiary Ekowood Sdn Bhd's factory in Ipoh.
Lim said: “We are negotiating another REPA with Tenaga for the supply of energy from this biomass plant. Hopefully, if we can sell at the right price, it will generate another RM6mil in profit annually, starting from early 2006.”
The group's palm pulp and paper biogas energy plant at the Kunak integrated complex is targeted to start operations by 2006, he added.
“We hope to produce 30,000 tonnes of palm fibre pulp and paper a year, focusing on the domestic and China markets,” said Lim. This plant has received a RM20mil grant from the Forest Research Institute of Malaysia.
TSH group managing director Datuk Kelvin Tan said the group's expansion into power plants would cushion its core businesses in oil palm plantations, palm oil milling and wood-based operations.
Tan said TSH was set to open a palm oil mill in West Sumatra by the year-end through its joint venture with the co-founder of Indonesia's PT Astra group.
TSH has 4,750ha of oil palm plantation and three palm oil mills in Sabah. Palm oil production amounted to 100,000 tonnes last year, and is expected to rise to 120,000 tonnes this year.
Lim said: “As a producer, we are very comfortable with the current crude palm oil price, which has given us the opportunity to lock in sales at an average RM1,900 per tonne until the end of this year.”
Tan said the group had been steadily registering compounded annual growth of 25% per annum over the past 10 years. “We hope to maintain or improve on this over the next three years.”
However, despite its robust growth and sustainable operations, Tan said, TSH's price earnings (PE) was still low at 9.9 times, unlike that of other companies with similar business activities, at 15 times.
For financial year ended Dec 31, 2003, TSH group recorded a pre-tax profit of RM49.7mil on the back of RM401.6mil in turnover.
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