Incitec Pivot first half profit down 23 per cent

Explosives and fertiliser manufacturer Incitec Pivot has announced a 23 per cent decline in its half-year to March 31 profit, with a weak market for fertiliser and the high Australian dollar impacting on the result.

The Australian Financial Review reports that Incitec posted an after-tax net profit of $110.2 million for the last six months, a decline of $33 million on the corresponding period last year.

Fertiliser earnings were down 19 per cent. However, despite the softening in the mining sector, explosives earnings were up by seven per cent.

"The result continues to support our strategy of investing in the explosives business, which will continue to be realised over the coming years as the Moranbah plant is fully commissioned and the Louisiana ammonia plant is constructed," said CEO James Fazzino in a statement, reported by AAP.

Construction on the Moranbah plant in central Queensland began last year, and announced the Louisiana ammonia factory last month, citing the current low gas prices in the United States.

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