On the day that SaskEnergy, the government owned natural gas company, announced its latest profits, officials also said a rate hike was just around the corner.

SaskEnergy's CEO Doug Kelln said Tuesday that the long, cold winter resulted in the company paying more for natural gas than it charged consumers. So, a rate hike is expected.

The company, he said, will submit a request for a hike to the province's Rate Review Panel in a few months.

SaskEnergy made $79 million in profit last year, about the same as the year before when it had net income of $74 million.