MMC To List 3 Units Worth RM14 Billion

Kuala Lumpur: MMC Corp Bhd's chief said the diversified group aims to list three of its units - Gas Malaysia Bhd, Malakoff Bhd and Johor Port - in a move to unlock value and plans to spend about RM1 billion to expand its Port of Tanjung Pelepas (PTP) in Johor.

The listings, to be kicked off with that of Gas Malaysia, could have a combined market capitalisation (cap) of as much as RM14 billion, group managing director Datuk Hasni Harun said.

Hasni did not set a timeframe for the listings, saying they could be announced this year or next.

Market speculation, however, is rife that the MMC-controlled Gas Malaysia, a company that distributes natural gas to households and industries, may be listed this year.

Hasni said this would all depend on the approval of Gas Malaysia's other shareholders, namely Petronas Gas Bhd and Tokyo Gas-Mitsui & Co.

"I am for the listing. Together with Shapadu (Group), we are a 55 per cent shareholder in Gas Malaysia, so we're depending on the other 45 per cent shareholder. Once they say yes, we will proceed with the listing," he told reporters after MMC's annual general meeting yesterday.

He said Gas Malaysia could have a market cap of about RM5 billion.

Malakoff, the country's biggest independent power producer of which MMC owns 51 per cent, was previously listed on Bursa Malaysia but then taken private in 2006 in a massive RM9.3 billion deal.

On PTP, Hasni said the port would be hitting its maximum capacity of 8.5 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) either this year or the next, so it would need to spend some RM1 billion to expand its facilities.

"The land has already been reclaimed, so it's just the equipment cost as well as the wharf which we need to construct," he remarked.

Its wholly-owned Johor Port, meanwhile, is a "matured" port and its growth would come from the non-container business, in particular liquid bulk.

On its energy business, Hasni indicated confidence at Malakoff winning a bid to build a 1,000 megawatt coal-fired power plant, an extension to its Tanjung Bin plant in Johor.

The group has already lined up financing should it win the bid. "We were informed that we were technically and commercially competitive," he said, adding that the country's Energy Commission is likely to decide on on the winning bid before October this year.

The other bidder for the project is Jimah Energy Ventures Sdn Bhd, he added.

On the Klang Valley's RM36 billion mass rapid transit (MRT) project, Hasni said a lot of international companies would likely be keen to participate in bids for the tunneling portion of the first line of the system.

"Based on their experience in cutting limestones and also the diameter of the tunnel, we noted there are at least nine to 10 companies who may be participating in the tunnel works, competing with MMC-Gamuda," he said.

Constructing the tunnel will cost "at least four to five times" more than the elevated portion of the system, Hasni said.

MMC and its joint-venture partner Gamuda Bhd is the project delivery partner for the MRT. 

Source : Business Times
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