(Adds context, details, CEO quote)
AMSTERDAM, April 29 Dutch-listed construction
and chemicals company OCI NV missed earnings forecasts for 2013
partly because of difficult conditions in its core Middle
Eastern markets, but said it expected 2014 to be better as it
and other regions improve.
In its annual report, the company said earnings in its
fertilisers business had been hit by irregularities in gas
supply in Egypt and difficulties obtaining export licences in
Algeria. A deteriorating economic environment in Egypt had also
weighed on revenues in its construction business.
Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation
rose 7.6 percent to $812.2 million, missing an analyst consensus
forecast of $896 million compiled by Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Revenues rose 16 percent to $6,131.8 million, exceeding a
consensus forecast of $5.90 billion.
"We expect operating conditions to normalize for our
fertilizer & chemicals Group during 2014," said Chief Executive
Officer Nassef Sawiris in a statement, adding that the operating
environment in the Middle East, North Africa and the United
States was improving.
A company spokesman said OCI was adding capacity in its
higher margin fertilisers and chemicals business, and
diversifying away from the Middle East, with a fertiliser plant
in Iowa due to come on line in 2015 and a 1.75 million ton
methanol project in the US due in 2016.
The company, which moved its primary listing from Cairo to
Amsterdam last year to gain better access to capital markets,
still has a $673.7 million tax charge on its balance sheet as a
liability pending final resolution of a tax dispute with the
(Reporting By Thomas Escritt; Editing by Sophie Walker)