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Release Date:
Release ID: 133

OUTSTANDING FIRST HALF FOR CMB

CMB’s executive committee has discussed the preliminary results recorded for the second quarter and those for the first half of 2008.

The consolidated profit after taxation for the first half of 2008 amounts to EUR 133 million (2007: EUR 148 million).



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Bocimar contributes EUR 139 million to the consolidated result for the first half of 2008 (2007: EUR 146 million). The average spot market earnings for the first half of the year were as follows:



Bocimar’s result for the first half of 2008 takes into account capital gains for a total amount of EUR 99 million (2007: EUR 89 million), realised on the sale of Jiangnan 2346 (2008 – 76,000 dwt), CMB Florentina (2005 – 76,838 dwt) and CMB Laetitia (2007 – 75,991 dwt).



The delivery of the already announced sale of the vessels CMB Yangtze (2007 – 53,617 dwt) and CMB Aurélie (2007 – 76,558 dwt) is scheduled for the third quarter. Furthermore the result also takes into account a loss of EUR 2 million on FFAs, an improvement of more than EUR 5 million as compared to the first quarter.

The prospects for the second half of the year remain good. For the remainder of the year Bocimar’s fleet is almost completely covered by time charter contracts and contracts of affreightment with blue-chip counterparties.



Moreover, the values of bulk vessels – both new and second-hand – remain at historically high levels due to the persistently strong freight markets and the fully booked shipyards.



The contribution of the Other activities for the first half of 2008 amounts to EUR -6 million (2007: EUR +2 million). This result takes into account, inter alia, EUR 8 million of negative exchange rate differences on the Group’s USD cash position – i.e. an improvement of EUR 5 million compared to the first quarter – and a write-off amounting to EUR 3 million on Fortis shares held by CMB. The contribution of the airfreight activities (Air Contractors and Europe Air Post) that were taken over earlier this year, amounts to approximately EUR 3 million.



As announced at the general meeting of May 2008, the payment of a gross interim dividend of EUR 1.00 will be proposed to the board of directors of 26 August 2008, provided these results are confirmed when preparing the final accounts and following audit.





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