Shares of Rashtriya Chemicals and Fertilizers (RCF) rallied up to 15 per cent at Rs 64.85, also its 52-week high, on the BSE in intra-day trade on Thursday after rating agency ICRA reaffirmed credit ratings of the company’s instruments and revised outlook to ‘positive’ from ‘stable’.
At 11:24 am, the stock was trading 12 per cent higher at Rs 63.25 on the BSE on the back of heavy volumes. The trading volumes on the counter jumped over five-fold with a combined around 19 million equity shares changing hands on the NSE and BSE.
The revision in outlook to ‘Positive’ factors in the disbursal of additional subsidy announced under the Atma Nirbhar Bharat Package 3.0 for the fertilizer sector which is expected to reduce the subsidy arrears of RCF which would, in turn, lead to decline in short-term borrowings and interest costs and consequently, strengthen the debt coverage metrics, ICRA said in rating rationale.
RCF is in discussion with the Department of Fertilisers (DoF) for consideration of minimum fixed of Rs 2,300 /MT and any resolution in favour of the company would further strengthen its profitability and liquidity position. ICRA also notes the healthy operating profits registered by industrial chemicals segment in 9M FY2021 because of lower cost of production owing to better energy efficiency and decline in natural gas prices, it said.
ICRA further said the ratings continue to factor in the high financial flexibility of the company by virtue of the large sovereign ownership and its ability to access debt markets at competitive rates to support its liquidity profile. The ratings also factor in the established position of RCF as one of the largest urea manufacturers in India having vertically integrated operations in fertilisers and chemicals coupled with healthy operating efficiency of the company’s urea operations reflected in high plant utilisation levels.
Besides RCF, Gujarat State Fertilisers & Chemicals (GSFC), Gujarat Narmada Valley Fertilizers & Chemicals and Chambal Fertilisers & Chemicals from the fertilisers stocks were up between 3 per cent and 6 per cent on the BSE. In comparison, the S&P BSE Sensex was up 0.91 per cent at 51,245 points.