300 percent profit gain for Euronav

Euronav has posted a huge 300 percent profit gain for the year ended December 31, 2008.

The result after taxation for 2008 was US$402,469, compared with US$101,055 in 2007. As of March 24, Euronav holds 1,750,000 own shares. Euronav said that given the current uncertainties linked to the economic crisis and its potential impact on the tanker market, the company’s board of directors has balanced rewarding shareholders with preservation of cash and will propose at the annual general meeting of shareholders on April 28 to pay a further Eur 1.60 (US$2.16) as dividend, bringing the total gross dividend for the financial year 2008 of US$3.52, compared with US$1.08 in 2007 per share. US$1.35 gross per share has already been paid as interim dividend on September 5, 2008. The balance in the amount of US$2.16 will be payable as from May 5, 2009. The share will trade ex-dividend as from April 28, 2009 (record date: May 4, 2009). At the current Euro/dollar exchange rate, the total proposed dividend represents approximately a 46 percent payout ratio, compared with 64 percent in 2007. For the first quarter of 2009, the estimated average VLCC time charter equivalent rates of the Tankers International pool is US$48,000 per day. This estimate is based on 86 percent of available spot days already fixed in the first quarter. The average Suezmax rate of the Euronav fleet for the first quarter is about US$38,000 per day.

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