Petroliam Nasional has said that second half profit fell by fourteen percent as Malaysia's state owned oil and gas company earned less for the crude oil it sold because demand slowed after the September 11th terrorist attacks in the US.
Profit for the six months ended March 31st fell by fourteen percent to 5.65 billion ringgit ($1.5 billion), from 6.59 billion ringgit a year ago. Full-year profit at Petronas, as the company is known, fell by twelve percent to 14.57 billion ringgit from last year's record of 16.49 billion.
Oil producers including Europe's largest, Royal Dutch/Shell Group, and TotalFinaElf have posted lower earnings this year because of a drop in oil and gas prices and a collapse in profit margins from making gasoline and diesel. Shell's first-quarter profit fell by forty two percent while Total's declined by forty percent.
“The global economic slowdown precipitated a decline in demand for energy and a downward slide in the prices of oil,” said Azizan Zainul Abidin, chairman of Petronas, in a prepared speech. “The situation was further aggravated by the aftermath of the events of the Sept. 11 tragedy and the geopolitical instability in several parts of the world.”