HARARE, March 22 (Reuters) - South Africa's thermal coal producer Thungela Resources on Tuesday reported 6.9 billion rand ($461.02 million) in full-year profit, on the back of firmer prices and improved cost management.

Thungela's headline earnings per share (HEPS) - the main profit measure in South Africa - was 66.57 rand for the year ended Dec.31, up from a loss per share of 5.31 rand the previous year.

The company, which was listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange last year, declared a dividend of 18 rand per share. ($1 = 14.9669 rand)

(Reporting by Nelson Banya Editing by Promit Mukherjee)