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Firm log prices help Evergreen result

By Phil Boeyen, ShareChat Business News Editor

Thursday 23rd August 2001

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Evergreen Forests (NZSE: EVF) has reported an increased operating surplus but an investment writedown has seen a flat net profit.

For the year to the end of June the forestry company made a net profit of $5.04 million, down from last year's $5.15 million.

Chief executive, Mark Bogle, says the profit, and an increase from $148.6 million to $157.4 million in the company's forest value, is a very satisfactory result in what has been a difficult year for the sector.

The company's operating surplus for the year actually rose to $6.51 million compared with $5.16 million previously, but its investment in the Nuhaka Forestry Fund (NZSE: NUH) was written down by $1.46 million.

Harvest volume rose to 163,000 cubic metres from 141,500 cubic metres last year.

Mr Bogle says prices for high-quality pruned logs had been firm throughout the year and that had been a key factor in the company's ability to deliver an increased operating surplus.

"Strength in the pruned log market had also helped to underpin the year-end forest valuation."

The company has decided against paying a dividend for the year but intends to buy back up to 2% of shares during the next 12 months to enhance shareholder value.

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