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Sunny outlook for OOIL on terminal sale speculation

Sunny outlook for OOIL on terminal sale speculation

Hong Kong: Orient Overseas (International) Ltd, the listed parent of Orient Overseas Container Line, continues to not trade on the Hong Kong stock exchange for a second straight day, pending an announcement thought to be the much telegraphed sale of four North American terminals. The South China Morning Post reports that OOIL has sold its four ports in New York, New Jersey and British Columbia (pictured) to Toronto-based Brookfield Asset Management Inc (BAM) for between US$1.8bn and US$1.9bn. The newspaper report has yet to be confirmed but if true would represent a stunning return for the Tung family controlled firm given that CSX World Terminals, with a far larger portfolio of worldwide terminals, was sold just under two years ago for $1.3bn. Since that sale prices for terminals have skyrocketed as the sector has consolidated dramatically. For OOIL, whose share price has more than quadrupled to over HK$36 in the last three years offloading non-core assets is seen as a way to ensure share price stability amid declining freight rates. Also short-listed for the OOIL terminal auction were Macquarie Infrastructure Group and RREEF, the real-estate and infrastructure investment arm of Deutsche Bank AG.  [23/11/06]

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