(Reuters) - California power producer PG&E Corp said on Tuesday it was on track to exit Chapter 11 bankruptcy by June 30 and that it plans to spend about $37 billion to $41 billion over the next five years to safeguard its equipment as it posted another quarterly loss on claims related to fires.
Continue Reading Below
The company is restructuring amid Chapter 11 proceedings, trying to bounce back from the negative publicity caused after its equipment in California was blamed for deadly, historic wildfires.
PG&E needs to exit bankruptcy by June 30 to participate in a state-backed fund that would help power utilities cushion the hit from wildfires.
|PCG||PG & E CORP.||12.22||+0.18||+1.54%|
But past wildfires took its toll on the company again, with it posting another fourth-quarter loss hurt by $5 billion in charges for third party claims for fires in 2015, 2017 and 2018. The company's net loss narrowed to $3.6 billion, or $6.84 per share, in the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, from $6.9 billion, or $13.24 per share, a year earlier.
PG&E had filed for Chapter 11 protection in January 2019, citing potential liabilities in excess of $30 billion from deadly wildfires in 2017 and 2018 linked to its equipment.
The company's planned infrastructure investments would result in a nearly 8% growth in rate-base, which refers to the value of properties on which a utility is allowed to earn returns.
PG&E, which last month reached a deal on its restructuring with creditors who were pushing for a rival plan, is facing opposition from California Governor Gavin Newsom, who has threatened a state takeover of the utility.
(Reporting by Nishara Karuvalli Pathikkal in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)