Wed, 17 May 2000

Telkom's net profit up in first quarter

JAKARTA (JP): Publicly listed domestic telecommunication provider PT Telkom Indonesia announced on Tuesday a consolidated net income of Rp 751.94 billion (US$94.22 billion) for the first quarter of this year.

Telkom said the figure reflected an increase of 145.7 percent on the Rp 306 billion it earned in the same period last year.

Earnings per share were Rp 74.6, an increase of 9.35 percent over the same period last year.

The company said the high increase in net income resulted from a higher growth in total operating revenues than in operating expenses as well as a decrease in the other net expenses.

The company, which is also cross-listed on the New York and London stock exchanges, used a conversion rate of Rp 7,980 against the U.S. dollar in calculating its first quarter financial statements.

During the first quarter this year, Telkom's total operating revenues grew by 27 percent to Rp 2.22 trillion from Rp 1.75 trillion over the same period last year.

While its total operating expenses rose by 13.4 percent to Rp 1.12 trillion in the first quarter this year from Rp 990.24 billion in the corresponding period last year.

Foreign exchange losses reached Rp 258.8 billion in the first quarter this year, but the loss could be offset by the company's gain from foreign exchange of Rp 30.6 billion during the three month period.

As of March 31 this year, Telkom and its five multinational partners in the joint operation scheme (KSO) were operating a total of 6,185,793 active telephone lines, comprising of 3,307,166 lines in Telkom regions and 2,878,627 lines in KSO regions.

Under the KSO agreement signed in 1995, Telkom appointed five consortia of local and foreign firms to finance, build and operate two million telephone lines, a number which was later revised to 1.2 million lines, in five regions across the country until 2010 under a revenue-sharing scheme. The regions are Sumatra, West Java, Central Java/Yogyakarta, Kalimantan and eastern parts of Indonesia.

Due to the prolonged impact of the economic crisis, during the first quarter, Telkom and its KSO partners lost 42,255 subscribers -- of which 20.8 percent were business subscribers, 78.1 percent residential subscribers and 1.1 percent social subscribers.

Telkom, which is controlled by the government with a 66.19 percent stake, has the exclusive rights to provide local fixed line calls until 2010 and domestic long distance calls until 2005.

The government said, however, it would arrange for an early termination of the right as part of its plan to allow Telkom to shift from being a fixed line telecom operator to a full network service operator with the capability of providing both fixed line and mobile phone local and international telephone calls.

On March 31, the communication ministry granted Telkom a license in principle to operate a cellular service based on DCS- 1800 technology with nation-wide coverage.

Telkom is currently proceeding with the administration requirements, including the frequency allocation, of the license. (cst)