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Salmones Multiexport Turns a Corner

CHILE - Multiexport Foods subsidiary Salmones Multiexport achieved an EBIT of $1.9 million and EBITDA of $ 3.6 million, in the first quarter 2010 - the highest for two years.

Sales of salmon and trout production totalled 8,603 tonnes of raw material (WFE) in the first quarter of 2010, which represents a 15.8 per cent decrease compared to the same period in 2009, when sales were 10,214 tonnes.

However, for the quarter production was 11,039 tons (WFE), a 17.8 per cent increase compared to the same period in 2009.

This declining in sales and increased harvesting in the first quarter of 2009 is explained by the high amount of raw material from 2008 sold in early 2009.

In the first quarter, the net loss was $ 93 thousand, which compares favourably to the $21.0 million losses from the same period in 2009, being the first quarter after two years in which losses are not recorded.

During the first two months of year 2010, global exports of harvested salmon products fell 6.4 per cent compared to the same period of 2009.

This was mainly due to the lower volumes exported from Chile, which took a 25.8 per cent dive. Exports from other producing countries had a 9.1 per cent growth, mainly from Norway, UK and Ireland.

The reference price (Urner Barry) of Chilean Atlantic salmon fillet (2-3 pound caliber) in the U.S. market in the first quarter of 2010, averaged $ 4.63 per pound, which represents an 39.3 per cent increase on the same period of 2009 ($ 3.32 per pound), explained by the a steep reduction from Chilean supply. In the last week of April the price reached record levels of $ 6.00 per pound, 47.1 per cent increase on the price of December 2009 ($ 4.08 per pound).

The average reference price (FIS) of Chilean trout (4-6 pound caliber) in the Japanese market during the first quarter of 2010 was 560 JPY/kg, which represents an increase of 14.5 per cent compared to the same period in the previous year (489 JPY/kg). In April the price is at levels of JPY 610 per kg, 13.0 per cent increase over the price ended December 2009 (JPY 540 per kg).

From 26 April 2010, the Servicio Nacional de Pesca or Sernapesca (Chile′s National Fisheries department) reported that there are no centres with outbreak of ISA and only five qualified as suspects.

On 10 March, Congress approved amendments to the Fisheries Law. This law is considered key to recover the sector, as it is expected to bring a legal support to banks and investors, reducing uncertainty and increasing confidence in the sector.

Multiexport Foods total income was $ 49.5 million in the first quarter of 2010, compared to $ 43.5 million in the same period in 2009, representing a 13.7 per cent increase. The company’s EBITDA in the first quarter of 2010 was $ 3.3 million, which compares very favourably to the $14.1 million loss from the same period of 2009.

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