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Forbes/AFX News Limited: Mitsubishi Corp to invest up to 1.8 trln yen for energy projects – report


AFX News Limited

Mitsubishi Corp to invest up to 1.8 trln yen for energy projects – report

04.19.2006, 09:21 PM


TOKYO (AFX) – Mitsubishi Corp will spend 1.5-1.8 trln yen from this year to 2009 to fund existing gas and coal projects, the Nihon Keizai Shimbun reported without citing sources.


Major trading firms have been increasing their investments to take advantage of soaring prices for natural gas and other resources, the business daily said, adding the amount of Mitsubishi's investment marks a sharp increase from the 800 bln yen it initially projected for the years to March 2004 to 2007.


Mitsubishi will use the funds mainly for existing projects, such as the Sakhalin 2 natural gas field in Russia, as well as to boost production at an Australian coal mine, the report said.


Mitsubishi posted record profit in the year ended March 31 on the back of surging resource prices. Its investments topped 500 bln yen from April 2004 through December 2005. The company will tap into its own cash at hand as well as loans to fund the projects.


Meanwhile, Mitsui & Co also plans to hike investments for 2006-2007, setting aside 800 bln yen or a near 20 pct increase over the amount it spent the past two years, the report said.


Mitsui intends to spend 200 bln yen at its Sakhalin 2 natural gas operation and 800 bln yen in two years to raise production at its iron ore and coal mines.


Marubeni Corp will spend more than 200 bln yen annually during the current financial year and the next. In the past three years, it had invested a total of 400 bln yen, 160 pct more than originally planned after it acquired an oil field in the US, according to the Nihon Keizai.


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