THE cost of international calls will be cut by two per cent this year, Hongkong Telecom said yesterday as it announced record profits of $7.55 billion. The better than expected results for the year ending March 31 were up 17.5 per cent. Chief executive Linus Cheung said telephone users making overseas calls had already benefited from an eight per cent cut in tariffs. The cut had cost the monopoly telephone services provider $500 million this year, said Mr Cheung. ''Last year we only increased our local rates at half the rate of inflation [about five per cent]. ''Our IDD rates were already one of the lowest in the world and we cut our prices last August. ''We are committed to cutting our prices by a further two per cent this year.'' Mr Cheung claimed that, after taking account of inflation, customers were saving 17 per cent on overseas calls and could expect to save another 11 per cent, in terms of charge tariffs per minute. At Hongkong Telecom last year, international calls accounted for 63 per cent of the total turnover of $24.28 billion, up 12 per cent. Of this, calls made to and from China were the biggest growing sector, up 31 per cent, making up some 47 per cent of total international business. Local call growth was up by 14 per cent, said Mr Cheung. Hongkong Telecom was also looking at new technology communication services. ''We are now at the beginning of a new convergence towards a mix of communication media which could effectively re-shape our lives,'' he said. Deputy chief executive Peter Howell-Davies said that in line with the objective of developing new businesses, the company was pursuing the lifting of restrictions on expansion into cable services. At present, he said, the group was limited to taking about 15 per cent as a cable provider. This was being re-negotiated with the Government to increase the limit by next summer.