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UTILITIES | Staff Reporter, Hong Kong
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Hong Kong & China Gas PRC NG sales volume up 15% YoY

It outwits main rival Towngas China (TCCL).

HKCG PRC NG sales volume was +15% yoy in 1H12, higher than Towngas China (TCCL)'s +9% yoy in the same period. Citi notes that the growth rate of the latter was lower due to below national average NG supply volume growth in Northeast China and the Sichuan province where TCCL has many projects.

HKCG PRC NG sales volume growth accelerated to 17% yoy in July and 17.7%  yoy in August with no impact seen from economic slowdown. Likewise, TCCL NG sales volume growth accelerated to 11% and 12% yoy in the same periods.

 Sector-wide, Citi said that the growth rates were faster for the commercial sector but lower for the residential and industrial sectors.

Here's more from Citi:

Gas sales to vehicles are not significant,  representing less than 5% of total NG sales. HKCG has 60-70 vehicle refueling  stations in operation and has another 30-40 stations either under construction or pending for development.

HKCG targets to connect 1.0-1.2m residential households per annum in 2012-14E, including no connection growth yoy in 2013E. The connections would include over 80% for new properties and below 20% for old ones. Among the 80% of connections coming from to new buildings, this includes 60% from commodity buildings and 20% from subsidized housing. HKCG added that the residential connection fee of units of both categories are similar at around Rmb3,000/household.

HKCG connected 0.58m households in 1H12, including 0.10m from subsidiaries and 0.48m from associates. It sold 5.96bcm NG in 1H12, including 1.40bcm from subsidiaries, 3.96bcm from associates, and 0.6bcm from a 13%-owned project in Chengdu, which is also 30% held by CR Gas.

HKCG targets to sell at least 12bcm NG sales in 2012E, up 16-18% yoy. HKCG and TCCL are targeting to get 8-10  downstream NG projects in 2012E, including six acquired so far.

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