Enargas filed a criminal complaint against former officials Juan José Aranguren, Andrés Chambouleyron and the previous Enargas intervention of David Tezanos and Daniel Perrone for overcharging in the updating of gas tariffs. The procedure objected to was the arbitrary selection of a factor to update the tariff base, placing it far above what would have corresponded, deriving in exceptional and illegal income to the gas transportation and distribution companies for a minimum of $1.3 billion.
Telecom Argentina closed the first semester of the year with a net profit of 1.96 billion pesos ($26.74 mn), which represents a fall of 79.6% against the benefit obtained in the same period in 2019, due to the price freeze that has been in force since May and expires at the end of August. The number of users remained stable.
Compañía General de Combustibles (CGC) lost in the first half of the year 1.77 million pesos ($24.2 mn), as reported in a note to the National Securities Commission. CGC is the leader in gas production in Argentina's Southern Basin and is the co-controlling shareholder of the largest gas transportation network in the north and centre-west of the country (TGN, Transportadora de Gas del Norte), with connections to Chile, Bolivia and Brazil. Its specialization is the exploration and production of hydrocarbons (upstream) in the Austral Basin.
The mAbxience laboratory, which will produce in Argentina the active ingredient to develop the COVID-19 vaccine together with AstraZeneca for the University of Oxford, belongs to the Insud Group, owned by the entrepreneurs Silvia Gold and Hugo Sigman. Although the pharmaceutical area is the leading business, the Group is very diversified and also has investments in agribusiness, forestry, hotels, film production and publishing. It has more than 8,000 employees, is present in 40 countries and will have a turnover of 1.5 billion euros in 2019.
The German herbicide company DVA estimates that this year Argentine producers will spend some $2.6 billion on products to prevent weed growth. The figure for the herbicide market is similar to that of 2019. Herbicides make up 65% of what Argentine producers spend on inputs. It is there where it seeks to dispute an increasing portion of the business, for which it launched new products.
Sales of Loma Negra, Argentina's leading cement producer, fell by 30% in the first half of the year, mainly due to the drop in construction activity as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. The firm went from 22.29 billion pesos ($305.6 mn) in the first half of 2019 to 15.63 billion pesos ($214.35 mn) achieved in the same period in 2020.
According to the second-quarter corporate report presented on Monday, YPF recorded a loss of 85 billion pesos ($1.16 bn) due to the fall in international prices and low demand for fuel in this context of the pandemic. Naphtha and diesel sales fell up to 87% during the beginning of the quarantine. It reflected in decline in YPF's revenue, which during the period in question fell 17% below that recorded in the second quarter of 2019.
The ENRE sanctioned the electricity distributor EDESUR with a fine of 167.8 million pesos ($2.3 mn) for non-compliance with public safety regulations for 2018 and 2019. More than 3,000 cases were verified. The application of these fines, within the framework of the tariff freeze and the situation of social isolation, deteriorated the company's balance sheet, limiting its investment possibilities and regular operation.
Mercado Libre registered in the second quarter of this year a profit, before taxes, of $89.3 million. Thus, it more than recovered from the $16.7 million loss it had in the first quarter. The net gain for the second quarter (after tax) was $55.9 million. The year-over-year growth was 61%. Despite the positive results the company reported, the Free Market share fell 5.83%, closing at $1,124 per unit. The drop was due to profit-taking by operators.
The company Ausol, concessionaire of the Pan-American Highway and the West Access, made an official presentation to the Government, in which it requested compensation of just over $19.6 million for the freezing of rates during the first half of the year.