Falkland Islands Holdings, which owns the Falkland Islands Company, FIC, expects to report a slight fall in annual profits but anticipates a quantum leap in the Falklands’ economy over the next decade with the oil industry and the commencement in 2014 of the Sea Lion project.
The company anticipates pre-tax profit of £3m for the year to the end of March, compared to £3.2m a year earlier. The group’s trading performance for the year was said to be in line with market expectations.
The group said that the performance of FIC trading had been satisfactory with retail sales experiencing renewed growth and the company’s new building services arm enjoying its first sales.
However “tourist activity for the FIC declined with fewer cruise ship visits following Argentine pressure but, the issue had largely been resolved by the year end”.
Falkland Islands Holdings said that preparations for the increase in activity related to the Sea Lion discovery have continued, including further strengthening of the management team in Stanley and preliminary work taking place on planning for related infrastructure projects.
As a result, “although turnover increased on the record levels seen last year, FIC contribution is expected to be slightly lower”.
Falkland Islands Holdings Chairman David Hudd said he was pleased to report another year of solid trading for the group.
Mr Hudd described “2012/13 was a particularly significant year for the group, as they were able to raise an additional £10m of equity funds which will enable the company to participate in the opportunities now emerging in the Falkland Islands”.
“We expect a quantum leap in the Falklands’ economy over the next decade and momentum is expected to build in 2014 as the development of Sea Lion commences” said chairman Hudd.
However, “in the short term conditions are expected to be quieter in the absence of drilling activity which has been a factor since 2010”. (FIRS)