Reliance profits improve due to oil and gas unit

 
Suzie Neuwirth
INDIAN conglomerate Reliance Industries posted a 13.7 per cent jump in net profit to $1bn (£590m) for the first quarter of the financial year, thanks to an improved performance in its oil and gas exploration division.

The company, which is controlled by India’s richest man Mukesh Ambani, said on the weekend that revenue had risen by 7.2 per cent to $17.9bn.

“Reliance has delivered a record level of consolidated net profit this quarter. This was achieved despite weak regional refining margins and a planned turnaround in our refinery,” said Ambani. “The petrochemicals business performance highlights the strength of our portfolio-mix and end-market diversity.”

Dwindling production rates and regulatory issues with India’s government have hindered the progress of Reliance’s oil and gas exploration unit.

But in the last quarter pre-tax earnings for its oil and gas division soared 114.4 per cent year-on-year, due to a strong performance from its US shale business.