SSE sticks with dividends and £7.5bn investments

Perth-based renewable energy and electricity networks giant SSE plc said in a trading statement on Thursday it will maintain its plans to invest £7.5 billion in low-carbon projects and will continue to target delivery of its five-year dividend plan to 2022-23.

“Coronavirus impacts on operating profit for the first three months of trading are in line with our expectations, with the total for 2020/21 still anticipated to be in the range of £150m to £250m before mitigation …” said SSE.

“SSE’s dividend provides income for people’s pensions and savings and is particularly vital given the economic consequences of the coronavirus pandemic.

“SSE continues to target delivery of the five-year dividend plan to 2022/23, including an 80p + RPI full-year dividend for 2020/21.

“It intends to declare a 24.4p interim dividend in November 2020 for payment in March 2021, based on an estimated RPI of 1.5%.”

SSE CEO Alistair Phillips-Davies said: “Whilst the wider economic implication of the coronavirus continues to impact on the business, we’ve been investing in the green economic recovery and progressing our £7.5 billion capex plan of low-carbon investments, primarily in renewables and electricity networks.

“At the same time, we are delivering the comprehensive financial plan we set out last month at our full year results, continuing work on our disposal programme and successfully issuing over £1bn in hybrid bonds.

“Although the key months of our financial year are still ahead of us, the steps we are taking leave us well placed to deliver on our financial objectives of promoting the long-term success of the company and paying dividends.”

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