Mauritian sugar firm DRBC's profit up 19 pct before merger

PORT LOUIS, Sept 14 Fri Sep 14, 2012 6:22am EDT

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PORT LOUIS, Sept 14 (Reuters) - Mauritian sugar producer Deep River Beau Champ Ltd, now part of new firm Alteo Ltd, posted a 19 percent rise in pretax profit for the year ended June 30, helped by increased profitability from its Tanzania operation.

Alteo Limited was created in July with the merger of Deep River Beau Champ Ltd and Flacq United Estates Limited (FUEL), becoming the largest sugar milling company on the Indian Ocean island.

Alteo said DRBC's pretax profit for the year ending June 30 was 1.188 billion rupees ($39.14 million) compared to 998,751 million rupees a year earlier.

"The 2012 performance is mainly attributable to the higher profitability of our Tanzanian operations which helped to offset the loss registered in the property development sector," the company said in a statement on Friday.

It said sugar output in Tanzania reached a company record high of 91,000 tons against 86,000 tons in 2011.

The sugar sector accounts for roughly 1.2 percent of Mauritius' $10 billion economy. The business has been suffering since the European Union cut its guaranteed price offered to exporters from the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) bloc. ($1 = 30.3500 Mauritius rupees) (Reporting by Jean Paul Arouff; Editing by Richard Lough)

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