WHA chops five-year budget

WHA chops five-year budget

WHA Corporation Plc has decreased its five-year investment budget for 2020-24 to 52 billion baht, blaming a host of risks such as the US-China trade war and bearish global economy.

WHA's board of directors approved the cut in the fourth quarter of 2019, decreasing the budget from 54 billion baht.

Jareeporn Jarukornsakul, chairman and chief executive, said negative global economic momentum is affecting overall economic movements.

In addition, WHA cited the slow implementation of the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) and the country's weak economy.

"The board of directors is concerned these risks are pressuring WHA's businesses this year," said Ms Jareeporn.

In 2020, WHA expects revenue and profit-sharing to grow 15%.

She said 2020 revenue and profit-sharing are driven by logistics warehouses and factories of 250,000 square metres, industrial land sales of 1,400 rai and transferred assets of 150,000 sq m to WHA's real estate investment trusts (REITs).

Some 1,200 rai is for local industrial estates, while 200 rai is for operations in Vietnam.

Its four REITs have growth of 45% per year with a combined value of 55.4 billion baht.

WHA has developed plots of 10,000 rai and undeveloped plots of 68,500 rai in Thailand, largely in EEC provinces, said Ms Jareeporn.

The company operates 10 industrial estates locally. WHA plans to develop an 11th industrial estate in Rayong this year and expand four others by 2023, including WHA Eastern Seaboard Industrial Estate 4, also in Rayong.

She said its operation in Vietnam aims to accelerate land sales in WHA Industrial Zone 1 – Nghe An.

"This project is going through licensing and permit issuance to develop 498 hectares of remaining plots," said Ms Jareeporn.

"WHA will expand power and water utilities in Vietnam such as waste water reclamation, demineralised water, seawater desalination and renewable power."

She said WHA will seek to consolidate long-term partnerships, especially in e-commerce companies to launch new e-commerce properties in 2020.

For the total logistics warehouse, WHA expects to manage and own 2.56 million sq m.

"WHA will expand its footprint and opportunities in Thailand, Indonesia and Vietnam," said Ms Jareeporn.

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