Dubai-based Gulf Navigation Holding has announced loss-making financial results for the first half of 2019, despite achieving increased operating revenues of AED 85.7 million (US$ 23.33 million), compared to AED 71.1 million (US$19.36 million) during the same period of 2018, a year-on-year increase of 21%. The company reported a net loss of AED 27.8 million (US$ 7.57 million) in first half of 2019 compared to loss of AED 14.8 million (US$ 4.03 million) over the equivalent months of 2018.
The company attributes this relatively disappointing performance largely to the fact that one of its petrochemical tankers had an extended dry dock for mandatory special survey work in the first half of the year, which led to additional costs being incurred. Gulf Navigation also incurred increased depreciation and finance costs on acquisitions made in the fourth quarter of 2018.
The company’s shareholders are planning to take advantage of anticipated changes to the UAE’s maritime law next year. A recent board meeting authorised management to allow for 100% foreign ownership, up from the current maximum limit of 49%, and to seek relevant approvals from the authorities to implement the change.
Chairman of the board, Saeed Mubarak Al Hajeri, also says it has approved a number of refinancing initiatives, which he expects will improve the company’s cash flow situation and help clear up some long outstanding debts. Furthermore, the company is preparing for the IMO 2020 deadline for sulphur emissions compliance by fitting scrubbers to a number of vessels.