Hellenic Petroleum, Greece's biggest oil refiner, posted a 20 percent rise in second-quarter core profit on Thursday, with higher exports offseting lower refining margins.
The company, which exports diesel and gasoline to markets in the southeastern Mediterranean and the Balkans
, saw refining margins fall as much as 35 percent from $7.3 per barrel and a marginal decline of demand in the domestic market, it said.
Exports of diesel and gas doubled to a record high of 2.300 metric tonnes, which contributed to 60 percent of total sales, the company said in a statement. Total sales stood at 4,006 metric tonnes from 2,950 metric tonnes in the second quarter of 2015.
Core profit or clean EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization), stripping out inventory-holding, was 156 million euros ($176.11 million) in the second quarter, up from 130 million euros in the same period last year.
Including inventory holdings, EBITDA was up 42 percent, year-on-year at 129 million euros.
Hellenic Petroleum said that after repayment of its $400 million bond in June, it is planning to refinance its 2017 Eurobond, subject to market conditions. Its net debt currently stands at 1.7 billion euros.
The company, which owns three refineries in Greece, said it plans to close down its Thessaloniki refinery in northern Greece
in the fourth quarter for full maintenance.
($1 = 0.8858 euros)
(Reporting by Lefteris Papadimas)