North American natural gas transmission specialist TransCanada has revealed that its second quarter profits were almost half that of the previous year at C$200 million. However, the fall was said to be the result of asset divestments inflating 2004 results.

TransCanada achieved a second quarter net income of C$200 million, or C$0.41 per share, compared to C$388 million, or C$0.80 per share, for second quarter 2004.

In a statement, the company said the decrease of C$188 million or C$0.39 per share was primarily due to recording C$187 million of after-tax gains in the second quarter of 2004 relating to the sale of the ManChief and Curtis Palmer assets to TransCanada Power, and the recognition of dilution gains and tax benefits from other sales in the period.

Excluding the total non-operational gains for both the second quarters of 2004 and 2005, net income for second quarter 2005 increased C$5 million.

The operational increase was mainly due to higher net income from the company’s gas transmission operations, which improved revenues due to tariff increases and the addition of the Gas Transmission Northwest System and the North Baja System, which were acquired by TransCanada in fourth quarter of 2004.

Meanwhile, half year figures were also down due to the effect of divestments in 2004. For the first six months of 2005, TransCanada’s net income was C$432 million or C$0.89 per share, compared to C$602 million or C$1.24 per share for the same period in 2004.