Antwerp-based tanker operator Euronav has posted its best quarterly results since Q3 2008 with first quarter profits up from USD1.37 million last year to USD80.85 million this year.
Chief executive Paddy Rogers responded ebulliently to the company’s improved results, which follow an USD45.80 million full year loss in 2014 and a fourth quarter loss of USD3.93 million
“With the oil price down and demand up, tankers are benefiting,” he said. “Ships on the water NOW can pay dividends NOW to reward shareholders for their support and confidence.”
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Euronav said that the year had got off to a strong start with a good winter market, unaffected this year by the Chinese New Year break.
The contango, which saw future prices overtake spot prices for a period in January, had been quickly absorbed as demand rose, taking the prices of physical oil for immediate delivery up with it.
Sustained higher freight rates after the Chinese New Year had reflected higher fundamental demand and growing confidence on the part of vessels owners.
The group said that the second quarter had followed the same positive trend so far, despite strong market volatility, and that there were good prospects for the trend continuing.
Demand for crude oil was growing, as recent forecasts had indicated, while fleet growth looked likely to be limited for the next two years and ton-miles were increasing with the trend towards long voyages.