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May 13, 1997updated 05 Sep 2016 12:52pm

UK PHONE GIANTS, FACING PROBLEMS, WILL POST HEALTHY PROFITS

By CBR Staff Writer

Cable and Wireless Plc and British Telecommunications Plc are both expected to declare healthy year-end profits this week. Analysts are predicting a 1.325bn pound to 1.4bn pound pre-tax profit for Cable and Wireless before exceptional items when it reports on Wednesday. A substantial portion of this will come from C&W subsidiary Hong Kong Telecommunications Ltd which announced net profits of $1.4bn last Thursday – though the future here is in some doubt, as negotiations continue over future ownership. Pre-tax profits for British Telecommunications, which reports on Thursday, are forecast to be in the 3.2bn pound region and the shares have continued to rise in value despite the UK Labor party’s dramatic return to power two weeks ago. Some analysts are predicting that the Labor government will include British Telecom in its windfall tax on the utiliries, which could see a 2bn charge levied on the telephone company in the new government’s first budget next month.

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