By The Nation
Surayut Thavikulwat, chief financial officer of BTS, said that the company’s income is expected to soar about 200 per cent in the fiscal year starting from April 2018 to March 2019 from the previous year’s at Bt17.45 billion.
The mass-transit service provider forecast income from its mass transit and maintenance businesses to rise 30 per cent from the previous year as it started to realise income of about Bt20-Bt25 billion from its BSR Joint Venture’s construction of the Pink Line (Khae Rai-Min Buri) and the Yellow Line (Lat Phrao-Samrong).
About Bt7-Bt9 billion worth of income is expected from procurement of electric trains for the Southern Green Line extension (Bearing-Samut Prakan) and installation of the electric and mechanical systems for the Northern and Southern Green Line extensions (Mo Chit-Khu Khot) with an estimated interest receivable of about Bt600-Bt700 million from procurement of the electric trains for the Green Line extensions and construction of the Pink Line and Yellow Line.
The number of passengers on the mass rapid transit lines is expected to increase 4-5 per cent from the previous year, despite a 1 per cent rise in the second quarter of this year in light of a drop in the number of Chinese tourists and problems with the electric trains. The number of passengers average 757,000 per trip per working day with a market share of 70 per cent.
“On this December 6, the company expects to commence service of the 12.6-kilometre Southern Green Line extension (Bearing-Samut Prakan) which will [grow] the line to 48.9 kilometres in total with 43 stations. The current distance is 38.1 kilometres with 35 stations,” Surayut said.
The Northern Green Line extension (Mo Chit-Khu Khot)’s one station at Lat Phrao intersection is estimated to commence its service in the middle of next year on expectation for the whole line extension to start providing service after nine months.
Surayut said that its media company VGI Global Media Plc (VGI) continues to expand its advertising media business based on the certainty of Thailand’s election, revising up its targeted income to Bt5 billion from the earlier estimate at Bt4.4 to Bt4.6 billion.
BTS’s property business is anticipated to generate income of about Bt350 million and its property arm U City Plc is expected to realise income of about Bt6 to Bt6.7 billion this year with earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation margin at no less than 25 per cent.
BTS plans an investment budget of about Bt11 billion to purchase 46 electric trains from overseas. So far, two to three electric trains have been imported and the remainder will be imported gradually before the Northern Green Line’s planned service commencement in 2020.
Surayut also expressed confidence that BTS will win an auction for the Bt224.54-billion high-speed train project connecting three airports, but depending on each bidder’s offer. The result will be announced in this December.
Regarding “the five-year plan (the year 2017/2018-2022/2023), the company sets its target for income to grow 30 per cent per year and net profit to rise 25 per cent per year following expansion of mass transit lines and other businesses,” Surayut said.