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Hydro-Québec president Thierry Vandal discusses the utility's 2010 results Wednesday in Montreal. ((Canadian Press/Paul Chiasson))

Hydro-Québec's net profit decreased more than 12 per cent or $356 million to $2.52 billion in 2010 due to lower water levels and reduced exports.

The government-owned utility said the reduced profits were due to rainfall that was "considerably lower than the historic average across its hydroelectric generating fleet" along with less net electricity exports and increased financial expenses.

Nonetheless, Hydro-Québec said the results were stronger than the $2.4 billion forecast in its 2009-2103 strategic plan because it benefited from a little stronger demand from industrial customers.  

Revenues were relatively unchanged from 2009 at $12.3 billion.  

It paid the provincial government a $1.89-billion dividend.