Husky's healthy profit has helped cushion the flagship's pre-operating losses from its 3G mobile operations Hutchison Whampoa has locked in a windfall HK$900 million dividend from its associated company, Husky Energy, helping it hedge against pre-operating losses from its third-generation (3G) mobile communications business. The Canadian energy firm, 35 per cent-owned by Hutchison, announced a C$420 million (HK$2.35 billion) special dividend payout on the back of a strong second-quarter profit surge. Toronto-listed Husky reported a 62.35 per cent jump in second quarter earnings to C$427 million thanks to an exceptional gain of $66 million from the strength of the Canadian dollar and a non-current tax benefit of C$161 million. As a result, Husky paid a C$1 special dividend on top of its one cent second-quarter dividend, prompting a 2 per cent share price surge to $18.91 - its highest level since September 2001. Hutchison chairman Li Ka-shing, who owns 37 per cent of Husky, received about HK$950 million in dividends. 'We are extremely happy with the performance of Husky. Our group's overseas businesses have a good track record and have consistently provided substantial returns for Hutchison,' said Canning Fok Kin-ning, Hutchison's group managing director. 'The contribution from Husky's dividend will further enhance the group's already strong financial position and increase Hutchison's healthy liquidity levels.' A Husky spokesman said the company had enjoyed record earnings as a result of higher than expected commodity prices, adding that it is 'significantly undervalued in the market'. Husky's strong earnings sparked a guessing game as to whether Hutchison would sell out of the energy firm to make up for an earnings gap from its 3G assets. 'While we believe Husky Energy is unlikely to be disposed of to a third party at the current price, we do believe it is a potential candidate for group restructuring,' said ING analyst Cusson Leung, adding that Hutchison's subsidiary Cheung Kong Infrastructure could be a likely buyer for Husky, Canada's No5 oil producer and refiner. ING revised up its earnings forecast for Hutchison for the year ending December by 5 per cent to HK$11.95 billion.