LNG Carrier Giant Nakilat Reports its Most Profitable Year Ever
Nakilat, the world's largest LNG carrier operator, announced Monday that it achieved its most profitable year ever in 2021. Over the span of the calendar year, the Qatari company posted a net profit of $370 million, up by nearly 17 percent year-on-year.
In a statement, Nakilat reported that the COVID-19 pandemic created a "very challenging and volatile" operating environment for shipping in 2021, but it succeeded in generating exceptional returns nonetheless. Lower finance charges helped bring down costs, boosting the bottom line.
“Despite the unique challenges faced by the company, we continued to build on our operational response to the pandemic, enabling us to adapt swiftly and ensure business continuity to create value for our shareholders and customers," said H.E. Dr. Mohammed Bin Saleh Al Sada, the chairman of Nakilat's board.
Nakilat is looking forward to a rising tide of LNG shipping in the years ahead, and it forecasts a global growth rate of five percent per year through 2025. Much of that extra volume will come from Qatar's own production: it is building additional liquefaction trains in a bid to boost output by 40 percent by 2026.
Nakilat currently operates 74 LNG carriers, the largest fleet of its class, and it serves both Qatari and foreign charterers. That fleet is set to expand even more in the years to come: one of its leading shareholders, Qatari state gas company Qatar Energy, has launched a multi-year newbuild campaign to order up to 100 new LNG carriers from South Korean and Chinese yards.