* 2012 net profit fell to 1.01 bln euros
* CEO sees recovery only in 2014
* Regulatory price changes in Portugal, Spain and Brazil
(Adds CEO quotes, more detail)
LISBON, March 5 EDP Energias de Portugal
, the country's biggest company, posted a 10 percent
fall in net profits on Tuesday, hit by the recession in Portugal
and Spain, and said another tough year lies ahead due to a
regulatory squeeze on energy prices.
The company said net profits last year fell to just over
1.01 billion euros ($1.31 billion), in line with the average of
analysts' forecasts, while net revenues were also in line,
edging up to 14.7 billion euros.
"We have told the market, very clearly, that 2013 is going
to be just as tough, or tougher than 2012, since it is the first
year that the whole of regulatory changes will impact," Chief
Executive Antonio Mexia told reporters.
"2014 is a year in which we will grow again."
Dealing with a crunching debt crisis, governments in Spain
and Portugal have been negotiating and revising down what they
pay utilities like EDP for the production of renewable energy.
"Earnings in Iberia and Brasil fell but our renewable energy
units in Poland, Romania, United States and other geographies
had strong growth," Mexia said.
Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and
amortisation (EBITDA) fell 3 percent to 3.63 billion euros, in
line with the consensus of market forecasts of 3.68 billion
Mexia said operations in Brazil, where EBITDA fell 22
percent, were hurt by regulatory changes that delayed tariff
payments from the government.
EBITDA also fell in Iberia - 57 million euros year on year
-- also due to regulatory changes, with the two
austerity-stricken governments scrambling to cut spending.
Portugal is in its worst recession since the 1970s after
resorting to painful austerity measures under an 78-billion euro
($1 = 0.7687 euros)
(Reporting by Filipe Alves and Andrei Khalip; Writing by Daniel
Alvarenga; Editing by Greg Mahlich)