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Tuesday, April 28, 2015, 11:19

PetroChina profit down 82% on low oil price

By Agencies

BEIJING - State-owned PetroChina Ltd., Asia's biggest oil and gas producer, says its quarterly profit declined 82 percent from a year earlier due to a sharp decline in oil prices.

The Beijing-based company said it earned 6.2 billion yuan (US$989 million), or 0.03 yuan (0.5 cents) per share in the three months ending March 31. Total revenue fell 22 percent to 410.3 billion yuan (US$65.9 billion).

PetroChina, one of the world's most valuable companies by market capitalization, cited a "significant drop of prices of crude oil and refined oil," slower Chinese economic growth and a "complicated political and economic situation."

PetroChina said it was cutting costs and some business segments did much better than the overall operation. Profit from its natural gas and pipeline unit rose 428 percent to 7.3 billion yuan (US$1.1 billion), helping to offset losses elsewhere.

A series of executives and former executives of PetroChina and its parent, China National Petroleum Corp., are being investigated for corruption.

A former CNPC chairman, Jiang Jiemin, went on trial this month on charges of taking bribes and abuse of power and admitted in court he was guilty of corruption.

On Monday, the Communist Party of China announced the general manager of Sinopec Ltd., Asia's biggest refiner, had been detained in an investigation of possible discipline violation.

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