Hydro-Québec's net income jumps nearly $1 billion in 2022
Inflation and the cold have strongly contributed to the results of the Crown corporation, which will pay a dividend of $3.4 billion to the Quebec government
Sophie Brochu, President and CEO of Hydro-Québec, and Jean-Hugues Lafleur, Executive Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer, unveil the financial results of the company for the year 2022.
Hydro-Québec saw its net profits increase by more than a quarter last year to $4.55 billion, which corresponds to an increase of $993 million compared to 2021. Inflation and the cold contributed strongly to it, indicates the state company on the publication of its annual report on Wednesday.
In a context marked by the sharp rise in prices on export markets and the cold winter temperatures observed at the start of the year, [the] net profit reached $4,557 million, compared to $3,564 million for the previous fiscal year, specifies Hydro-Québec.
The dividend paid to the province is $3.418 billion, a quarter higher than 2021, when the dividend was then around $2.7 billion.
It is at home that it is reinvested, in our education system, in our health, our roads, cited as an example the CEO of Hydro-Québec, Sophie Brochu, during ;a press conference with Jean-Hugues Lafleur, Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Hydro.
Both warned that the exceptional figures unveiled on Wednesday will most likely not be carried over to the next financial year. In 2023, I will admit that prices have dropped significantly, commented Mr. Lafleur.
Sophie Brochu, CEO of Hydro-Québec and Jean-Hugues Lafleur, vice- President and Chief Financial Officer of Hydro
The unprecedented results of 2022 had already been announced last November. After only nine months, Hydro-Québec indicated at that time that it had already exceeded its record profit for 2021.
In the presentation of her final annual report, resigning CEO Sophie Brochu spoke of the goal of decarbonizing the economy and doing so by creating wealth for all communities in Quebec. She also welcomed a public model designed to reason over time, open to public consultation, and not managed according to current events.
It's valuable for making decisions that make sense [for the future], she said.
“Hydro-Québec is ready as ever to face the energy transition and meet the challenges facing Québec. »
— Sophie Brochu, CEO of Hydro-Québec
Unsurprisingly, these profits are the result of an increase in electricity sales and rising market prices. The average selling price increased from 5¢/kWh to 8.2¢/kWh between 2021 and 2022.
As the Crown corporation sold 180.6 terawatt hours (TWh) in Quebec in 2022, an increase of 5.4 TWh compared to 2021, it broke a new provincial sales record. These brought in $912 million more than in 2021.
Outside Quebec, the volume of sales fell slightly in one year (down 0.6 TWh) to 35.6 TWh in 2022, but the marked increase in prices on export markets generated revenues well above those of 2021 (+$1,086 million).
The budget for restoring service following the power outages in 2022 is $126 million, the highest amount since the crisis ice, indicates the annual report of Hydro-Quebec.
The Auditor General, Guylaine Leclerc, had also singled out Hydro-Québec for the decline in the reliability of its services, in her last report.
Among the aggravating factors, Hydro- Quebec cites the derecho last May and the winter storm with high winds in December, two critical periods during which more than half a million customers were without power.
In addition, the state-owned company had to significantly increase its purchases of electricity. They increased by $665 million in 2022, mainly due to three factors, it is mentioned: an increase in short-term supplies made on the markets to meet the specific needs of Quebec during winter cold spells at the start of of year; an increase in transportation costs relating to sales outside Quebec […]; and an increase in the volume of supplies, resulting among other things from the entry into force of new power purchase agreements.