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Israel Chemicals profit rises 3% in Q1qrcode

Jun. 11, 2012

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Jun. 11, 2012
Israel Chemicals Ltd. (ICL), which extracts potash from the Dead Sea to make fertilizer, said first-quarter profit rose 3% as product prices increased.

Net income gained to $288.9 million from $279.7 million a year earlier and revenue increased to $1.55 billion from $1.53 billion.

Europe, Asia and North America were the company’s main markets, with 43% of exports going to Europe and 19% to Asia and North America respectively.

Sales of potash to South America “increased significantly,” the company said, reflecting higher sales to Brazil, compared with the first quarter of 2011. Potash sales to Asia declined, reflecting a slowdown in the rate of shipments to India and delays in the signing of new supply contracts with Chinese customers.

A number of extreme weather events, including drought in China, Europe and the Americas, and cold weather in Europe hurt crop yields, leading to higher prices for grain in early 2012, the company said in the statement. Farmers apply potash, a form of potassium, to their fields to help strengthen plant root systems making their crops more resistant to drought.

The company said it would pay a dividend of $200 million for the quarter on June 26.

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