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Thursday, 11 August 2016

Malaysia: MARC affirms rating on Kimanis Power RM1.16b Sukuk

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian Rating Corporation Bhd (MARC) has affirmed its AA-IS rating on Kimanis Power Sdn Bhd's (KPSB) RM1.16bil Sukuk programme with a stable outlook. 
It said on Wednesday the affirmed rating was backed by the favourable terms of KPSB’s 21-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with the offtaker, Sabah Electricity Sdn Bhd (SESB) under which demand risk is transferred to the offtaker. 

SESB is 83% owned by power giant Tenaga Nasional Bhd (TNB), which has a senior unsecured debt rating of AAA/Stable. 

“The affirmed rating incorporates Kimanis power plant’s commendable operating performance in meeting PPA requirements in relation to the heat rate and unscheduled outage limit. 

“The rating also considers Petronas Gas Bhd’s 60% ownership of and substantial involvement in KPSB, the use of standard and well-proven technology and the gas sale agreement (GSA) with Petronas Gas’ parent Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) until June 2029 which mitigates fuel supply risk. 
KPSB owns the 285-megawatt (MW) combined-cycle gas-fired power plant at Kimanis Bay, Sabah. 

Kimanis O&M Sdn Bhd handles the operations and maintenance of the Kimanis power plant. General Electric Company (GE) is responsible for maintaining the gas turbines under a long-term contractual service agreement.

MARC said the Kimanis power plant achieved a lower load factor than the initial projection of 90% since achieving its full commercial operations date (COD) in November 2014 due to the excess capacity on the west coast of Sabah. 

Hence, KPSB had revised its load factor assumptions to 60% for the period between 2015 and 2017 in the revised budget. 

In 2015, the plant’s average load factor was 64.7% (2014: 51.2%). Its energy payment (EP) receipts of RM125.9mil were 16.4% above the budgeted amount in 2015. 

KPSB’s actual capacity payment (CP) of RM201.6mil was in line with the budgeted amount following the resolution of gas supply issues in early 2015. 

The plant’s average availability stood at 95.4% during the period under review. MARC  noted the plant’s average actual heat rates were within the PPA heat rate requirement and KPSB has achieved full pass-through of fuel costs in its first full year of operations.

KPSB recorded higher electricity sales of 1,519.6 gigawatt hours (GWh) in 2015 (2014: 967.0 GWh), reflecting the full commercial operations of its three generating blocks since November 2014. 

Operating profit margin was 26.8% on the back of electricity sales of RM200.1mil and operation cost of RM166.8mil. Fuel cost per unit generated improved to 5.94 sen per kilowatt-hour (kWh) (2014: 9.82 sen/kWh) due to the lower usage of distillates. 

Net cash flow improved to RM40.2mil (2014: deficit of RM299mil) as the plant incurred lower capital expenditure of RM2mil (2014: RM318.7mil). 

Cash balance stood at RM214.3mil in 2015 while KPSB’s leverage ratio improved to 1.27 times following the repayment of its Series 2, Tranche 1 sukuk amounting to RM35mil in December 2015. 

“Going forward, MARC expects KPSB’s leverage ratio to decrease progressively with the accumulation of retained earnings and paring down of the outstanding rated sukuk.

“Under Kimanis’ updated financial projections, KPSB’s debt servicing capacity remains adequate with minimum and average finance service coverage ratios (FSCR) of 2.24 times and 3.35 times respectively during the Sukuk tenure. 

“The projections are premised on the plant load factor of 60% which will progressively step up to 90% beginning in 2020,” it said.

MARC’s sensitivity results show that KPSB’s cash flows are sensitive to reductions in CP and higher-than-projected O&M costs. 

KPSB can withstand an increase in O&M costs by 73% before breaching its FSCR covenant in 2026. 

“MARC wishes to highlight that the cash balance brought forward from 2015 amounting to RM214.3mil is sufficient to meet the financial obligations in 2016 totalling RM154.0mil.

“The stable rating outlook on the sukuk programme reflects MARC’s expectations that the power plant’s cash flow generation will be in line with projections. 

“Conversely, the rating would come under pressure if the plant’s operations underperform significantly, leading to a weakening of KPSB’s liquidity position, and/or if the offtaker’s credit profile deteriorates,” said MARC.

(The Star Online / 10 August 2016)
Alfalah Consulting - Kuala Lumpur:
Islamic Investment Malaysia:

Islamic finance ideal for agricultural, micro and rural financing

LAHORE, Aug. 10 (MNA) – Islamic Finance provides an ideal mechanism to facilitate agricultural, irrigation, livestock, micro and rural financing products to boost the green economy.

Muhammad Zubair Mughal, the Chief Executive Officer, Al-Huda Center of Islamic Banking and Economics (CIBE) addressed the international conference Best Practices in Rural and Agricultural Finance jointly organized by African Rural and Agricultural Credit Association (AFRACA) in partnership with the Rwanda Development Bank (BRD), the Ministry of Agriculture, and IFAD in Kigali, the capital of Rwanda last week and was attended more than 300 delegates of 40 countries: “It not only provides a sustainable solution but creates the positive economic impact in lives of the farmers and rural communities,” said Mr. Mughal.
Mughal stated that the impact of Islamic financial products was much higher than any other financial products due to its uniqueness of asset-based financing and other features, features which is averse to diversion of cash fund for other purposes; “Islamic financial  products can be utilized in many fields for the development of agricultural, rural and micro financing in buying of seed, fertilizer, harvesting and planting equipment, agricultural  inputs, tractor, pesticides, farming goods, solar tube-wells, etc., while Salam is ideal product for agricultural financing, through which a farmer can fulfill all the financial needs for whole crop circle, e.g. liquidity, seed, pesticide, fertilizer, harvesting, irrigation, and market linkages,” said he.
Istisna can be used for small manufacturing business, dairy or agricultural production, construction of warehouses and cold storages, rural entrepreneur development, while Ijara is good for leasing of tractors, agricultural equipment, threshers, tube wells, small production unit lease, sugarcane planter, rice planter, harvesting vehicles, etc. Meanwhile, farmer can utilize musharakamudarabaand diminishing musharaka for rural housing, forest development, agricultural inputs, farming, sprinkler/drip/solar pumps, tube wells, microenterprise and SME setup, Agricultural Joint venture projects, Dairy and livestock development, etc.,” he detailed.
“The Islamic finance has specialized financial solutions for each segment of rural poverty, e.g. for extreme poor; zakat, sadqa, and fitr are available as grant-based financial product, for poor or upper lower class.  
“Irrigation financing is a big challenge for the development of agriculture, and we can observe that only few banks and financial institutions have specialized products to cater the financial needs for  irrigation financing;  but we can understand that Islamic finance again as a step forward to address this issue,” he told the conference.
he concluded that Islamic Financial products were ideal for financial inclusion for those segments of society who are averse to interest-based financial products due to religious reasons; “we have to promote Islamic financial products as system, which can be benefited by Muslim and non-Muslim equally but for Muslim,  there is an extra benefit that it is according to their religious believes but for Non-Muslims, it is an ideal solution of Banking, Finance and Business for prosperity and development,” he added.
Al-Huda Center of Islamic Banking and Islamic Economics (CIBE) is a well-recognized name in Islamic banking and finance industry for research, advisory and capacity building over 11 years. The prime goal has always been to adhere to the commitments and provide state-of-the-art advisory consultancy and educational services through various well-recognized modes vis-à-vis Islamic financial product development, sharia advisory, trainings workshops, and Islamic microfinance and takaful consultancies, etc.
(Mehr News Agency / 10 August 2016)
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Islamic Investment Malaysia:

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