BUENOS AIRES May 9 Argentina's state-controlled
energy company, YPF, said on Thursday its first-quarter net
profit fell 2.8 percent from a year ago mainly due to a deferred
income tax payment.
The company said net profit slipped to
1.26 billion pesos ($246 million) in the January-March period.
Capital expenditures doubled to 4.28 billion pesos, and revenues
rose 25.5 percent to 18.63 billion pesos.
Argentina's center-left government seized a majority stake
in YPF from Spain's Repsol in May 2012, arguing the
company did not invest enough to sustain oil and natural gas
production in an economy where energy demand had soared.
Repsol has denied this and sued to get compensated for its
YPF told the Buenos Aires stock exchange that crude oil
production slipped 0.7 percent in the first quarter from a year
earlier, while natural gas output fell a steeper 3.7 percent.
The production of refined products rose, however.
Production costs surged 24.9 percent in the quarter, roughly
in line with private estimates for consumer inflation.
In April, flash floods sparked a fire inside YPF's La Plata
refinery - the country's largest - which had a capacity of
28,500 cubic meters of crude per day. The blaze severely damaged
a coke oven and YPF said on Thursday that a new coke facility
would not come online until 2015.
"We expect that to compensate for the missing production, we
will need to import additional volumes of fuel to continue to
satisfy domestic demand," the company statement read.
YPF aims to boost its oil and natural gas production 32
percent by the end of 2017.