×

Aluminium maker Norsk Hydro's Q2 profit up, Qatar impact limited

* Adjusted EBIT NOK 2.9 bln vs forecast NOK 3.0 bln

* Maintains outlook

OSLO, July 25 (Reuters) - Aluminum producer Norsk Hydro met forecasts with a jump in second-quarter underlying profit on Tuesday and said sanctions imposed on Qatar had had a limited effect on its activities there.

Norsk Hydro and Qatar Petroleum co-own the Qatalum smelter where shipments were disrupted last month as a result of sanctions imposed by the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Egypt.

The plant, which produces more than 600,000 tonnes of primary aluminum per year, could not ship through the UAE port of Jebel Ali and had to find alternative routes. It currently ships via Oman.

Norsk said it had seen "limited effect from imposed sanctions on Qatar" and that Qatalum's second quarter results were up due to higher aluminum prices.

Norsk Hydro's underlying earnings before interest and taxes rose to 2.9 billion crowns ($362.75 million) from 1.6 billion and were in line with the 3.0 billion crowns forecast by analysts in a Reuters poll.

Its shares were down 2.2 percent at 0707 GMT, lagging an Oslo benchmark index down 0.27 percent.

The company has seen its share price rise 50 percent over the past year partly due to rising global demand for the light metal.

Norsk Hydro said it had benefited from higher aluminum prices in the quarter. It repeated its outlook for demand, that the global market was largely balanced, and said cost cuts of $500 million for the year were on track, despite a slight delay.

"We only expect minor changes to consensus estimates," said Hjalmar Alberg, an analyst at Kepler Chevreux.

($1 = 7.9944 Norwegian crowns) (Reporting by Ole Petter Skonnord; writing by Gwladys Fouche; editing by Jason Neely)