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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs   9 May 2013  

TM has cash to settle RM2b sukuk, will not issue more bonds for now


Telekom Malaysia Bhd (TM) has sufficient cash to settle its RM2bil sukuk ijarah expiring at the end of the year and remains committed to return RM700mil, or up to 90% of normalised net profits, to its shareholders.

“We have adequate bank balances to pay the sukuk and there is no need to issue more bonds at the moment,” group chief financial officer Datuk Bazlan Osman said after the company's AGM.

As at Dec 31, 2012, TM had cash and bank balances of RM3.73bil while total borrowings stood at RM7.14bil.

Additionally, Bazlan said the group had its capital expenditure (capex) investment covered, despite having to pay off its sukuk. He said TM spent about RM2.5bil in 2012.

“Our capex spend over revenue ratio is about 23%-24% this year. It was 25% last year against 28% in 2011,” he said.

Group chief executive officer Datuk Seri Zamzamzairani Mohd Isa said TM would continue to pay shareholders at least RM700mil or 90% of normalised net profits as dividends.

“As long as our profit grows, our dividend payout grows,” he said when asked if shareholders could expect a higher dividend payout this year.

Meanwhile, chairman Datuk Dr Halim Shafie said TM had obtained shareholders' approval for all the resolutions, including the final dividend of 12.2 sen per share, or RM436mil, to be paid on May 27.

“The total dividend payout, including the interim dividend of 9.8 sen per ordinary share amounting to RM351mil distributed in September 2012, amounts to 22 sen or RM787mil, exceeding the RM700mil payout mark,” he said.

On its growth for the current financial year, Zamzamzairani said Internet data and multimedia would continue to be its drivers.

TM's revenue rose 9.2% to RM9.99bil for the financial year ended Dec 31, 2012, outpacing the industry's growth rate. This year, TM is targeting a 6% growth in revenue and 3% for earnings before interest and tax.

“Our headline key performance indicator is meant to be a guidance in line with the country's economic growth. Internally, we have a more stringent target but we would not be able to disclose that,” Zamzamzairani noted.

He also said that TM would continue to roll out its UniFi services to demand-driven areas. UniFi currently has close to 552,000 subscribers, translating into a take-up rate of 38% against premises passed.

He said it had signed up with about 20 property developers to enable high-speed broadband when the properties were ready.

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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More






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