Astra volumes decline significantly

Astra Industries, once a top performer on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange, had a disastrous start to 2004.

In its report for the six months to February, the company says though sales improved by 386 percent from $11.5 billion to nearly $56 billion, volumes declined significantly in January and February.

Operating profit improved from $5.4 billion to $22.2 billion while net profit increased from $3.6 billion to $14.5 billion.

The company says general business confidence is likely to remain depressed in the short-term but monetary policy developments, if sustained, should have a positive effect.

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