India-focused coalbed methane (CBM) explorer Great Eastern Energy Corp Ltd on Wednesday said its profit in April-September period of this fiscal halved as sales got impacted due to COVID-19 lockdown.
Cash profit came in at USD 3 million (around Rs 22 crore) during the period under review, down from USD 6.18 million a year back, the company said in a statement.
Revenue was down to USD 13.14 million from USD 19.21 million.
London-listed GEECL is not obligated to provide quarterly earnings.
It sold 7.26 million standard cubic feet per day of gas in the six months as compared to 10.91 mmscfd.
"Due to COVID-19, there was a national lockdown in India from March 23, 2020, until the end of June 2020, which was thereafter gradually relaxed. This had an adverse impact on sales in H1 FY 2020-2021," it said.
The company said it has taken appropriate measures to minimize the impact by optimizing costs and increasing efficiencies.
"The company continues to maintain sufficient liquidity to meet all of its financial obligations and had not availed itself of the optional debt moratorium allowed by the Reserve Bank of India due to COVID-19," the statement said.
State-owned GAIL is laying a gas pipeline from Jagdishpur in Uttar Pradesh to Haldia in West Bengal and Bokaro in Jharkhand and Dhamra in Odisha. This pipeline is expected to be inoperation by February 2021, providing GEECL an opportunity to move gas produced from its CBM block at Raniganj in West Bengal to the Kolkata market and other parts of the state.
Prashant Modi, Managing Director & CEO of GEECL, said: "The COVID-19 pandemic and associated economic slowdown globally and in India has created severe challenges across the spectrum. With repeated lockdowns worldwide, we expect this situation to continue until one of the many vaccines being developed becomes available."
There has been some positive news on the vaccine earlier this week, he said.
"Encouragingly, the company's business and balance sheet has been able to comfortably withstand the severe impact of these events. With the steps taken by the government to accelerate the growth of the Indian economy due to COVID-19, demand for hydrocarbons in India has grown post-June 2020," he added.
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