Tabung Haji disposes of RM1.2b in assets, FY19 profit to double

The sale of the assets and equities has helped the state-owned fund post a revenue of RM1.3b for the 1H19

pic by TMR FILE

LEMBAGA Tabung Haji (TH) has divested RM1.22 billion worth of assets for a profit of RM61.1 million as at June 30, 2019, as the pilgrims fund expects to double its full-year profits this year.

Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (religious affairs) Fuziah Salleh (picture) said the fund’s divestments included equities with a book value of RM803.9 million, financial instruments (RM405.3 million) and real estate (RM10.4 million).

The sale of the assets and equities has helped the state-owned fund post a revenue of RM1.32 billion for the first half of 2019 (1H19) and a net profit of RM815 million.

TH’s overall assets are currently valued at RM74 billion, RM1.8 billion more than its RM72.2 billion liabilities.

“Turnover for the 1H19 has already been reinvested into various financial instruments that are steadier and offer better returns such as high-performing stocks on Bursa Malaysia.

“TH attributes its income to dividends, Shariah-compliant fixed income, rentals and profit derived from deposits at banks,” Fuziah told the Dewan Rakyat yesterday.

She was responding to a question by Datuk Seri Hasan Arifin (Barisan Nasional-Rompin) who inquired on TH’s estimated profit and revenue until June 2019.

Fuziah reiterated that TH’s domestic equity value has increased by RM1.12 billion from RM6.36 billion as at end-2018 to RM7.8 billion as at Sept 27, 2019, from its investments in blue-chip companies on the local stock exchange such as Tenaga Nasional Bhd and subsidiaries of Petroliam Nasional Bhd.

“Apart from equities, TH is also actively seeking opportunities to invest in other asset classes such as real estate and fixed income like sukuk. Its shift to more stable asset classes has eased some pressure on the fund’s exposure in Bursa Malaysia which is affected by the ongoing trade war,” Fuziah said.

On status of special-purpose vehicle (SPV) Urusharta Jamaah Sdn Bhd, Fuziah said the government-linked company has not made any transactions on the 106 equities transferred from TH last year. According to Fuziah, the SPV has recorded some profit to date.

“Although TH is no longer responsible for these companies, we want the public to know that the transfer was not made solely to dispose of the fund’s shareholdings in those equities. The SPV is committed to the recovery of these assets. If it wants to sell, TH has the first right of refusal,” she said in response to a supplementary question by Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed (Pakatan Harapan-Jeli).

Fuziah said TH is also considering an option to have separate categories for its nine million depositors, most of which comprise those who intend to use the money saved to perform the haj.

“TH is studying the possibility of dividing depositors into those who are saving for pilgrimage purposes and those who are seeking returns. We need to find a balance to achieve the two purposes,” she said.