PETALING JAYA: Former prime minister Najib Razak said today that Petronas’s RM21 billion loss for 2020 was a result of the company being weakened by the Pakatan Harapan and Perikatan Nasional governments after the 2018 general election.
From the 2018 elections until the end of 2020, the company’s total assets had fallen by RM36.7 billion, and cash reserves by RM43.3 billion while total liabilities and debts had increased by RM14.7 billion.
Thus, Petronas’s net worth decreased by almost RM52 billion from RM432 billion to RM381 billion even though Petronas generated huge profits in 2018 (RM55.3 billion) and 2019 (RM40.5 billion), he said.
All the profits made while the government was in Barisan Nasional’s hands had been taken out after the 2018 general election, he said in a Facebook posting today
He said the significant decline in Petronas’s net worth was a result of the actions by the governments after BN to sell Petronas assets and declarations of huge dividends paid to the government over the past 3 years.
Najib listed the dividend payments as RM16 billion in 2016, RM16 billion in 2017 (under Barisan Nasional), RM26 billion in 2018 and RM54 billion in 2019 (under Pakatan Harapan) and RM34 billion in 2020 under Perikatan Nasional despite the company suffering a RM21 billion loss.
He said that during his term of office as prime minister, the national oil company had raised its net value by almost four times to RM432.3 billion. “This was because the government took less dividends, generated more business opportunities and solved the problem of biased contracts in favour of independent power producers, which had cost Petronas RM10 billion to RM20 billion a year.”
He said: “It is estimated that around RM50 billion has been saved by Petronas after several IPPs were taken over by 1Malaysia Development Bhd, and the government re-tendered these IPP contracts by open tender for the first time in our history in 2012.”
Petronas was also weakened by the sale of RM6 billion in assets such as shares in MISC Bhd, Petronas Dagangan Bhd and Petronas Gas Bhd under Pakatan Harapan and a RM4 billion sale of shares in MISC and KLCC under Perikatan Nasional.