MANILA -- Billionaire Enrique Razon told shareholders of his port business ICTSI on Thursday that he slashed new capital expenditures to "almost nothing," as the COVID-19 pandemic choked global trade.
Capex was cut to $160 million from the original $270 million, of which $60 million was spent during the pandemic. Operating budgets were cut 11 percent across the board, Razon said.
The impact on ICTSI, however, was not as severe as it feared, Razon said. Operations have been going "smoothly," he said.
"Reacting quickly to the situation we have slashed almost all new capital expenditures to almost nothing leaving only those projects that were about to be completed and those absolutely necessary," Razon said.
ICTSI remains "keenly on the lookout" for potential acquisitions, he said.
Net profit at ICTSI fell 18 percent to $59.6 million in the quarter ended March, just as the world started to lock down entire countries to contain the spread of the virus.
Manila-based ICTSI develops and operates container ports and terminals in 18 countries.