Utility Suez to boost cost cuts, signs record 1.2 bln contracts

PARIS, March 1 (Reuters) - Utility Suez will boost annual cost cuts from 150 million euros ($183 million) last year to 200 million euros this year, and keep it at that level for the next two years to restore profits after one-off charges hit 2017 earnings.

The French waste and water group also said it had booked an exceptionally high level of 1.2 billion euros worth of new contracts in the first two months of the year.

Suez's revenues rose 3.58 percent to 15.87 billion euros.

However, core earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) fell 0.4 percent to 2.64 billion euros due to costs related to political uncertainty in Spain and due to the cost of terminating two services contracts.

Net profit fell 28 percent to 302 million euros, due to the impact of costs related to its earlier GE Water acquisition and a voluntary redundancy plan in France.

Suez, which issued a profit warning in January, confirmed its current 2018 outlook and its plan for a 0.65 euro dividend.

($1 = 0.8203 euros) (Reporting by Geert De Clercq; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta)