LONDON, April 30 (UPI) -- BP expects to hand as much as $8 billion to shareholders in part because of the divestment from TNK-BP, Chief Executive Officer Bob Dudley said.
BP completed the sale of its interest in TNK-BP to Russian oil company Rosneft in March in exchange for $27.5 billion in cash and a 19.75 interest in Rosneft shares.
"The early completion of the sale of our interest in TNK-BP has also allowed us to begin a share buy-back program, which we expect to return up to $8 billion to our shareholders and reflects the reduction in BP's asset base following our divestment program over the past three years," Dudley said.
BP said it produced more than 3 million barrels of oil equivalent per day after the transaction. Excluding production tied to Rosneft and TNK-BP, the British supermajor said it produced 2.3 million barrels of oil equivalent per day during the first quarter, 2 percent more than the fourth quarter but 5 percent less year-on-year.
BP said it posted a profit of about $4 billion for the first quarter, up from the $3.9 billion posted for the fourth quarter.
The first phase of a civil trial involving the 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico concluded April 17. BP said it's not grossly negligent, a key factor for penalties, and considers the accident a result of multiple faults from multiple parties. Its total cumulative charges from the incident at the end of the first quarter totaled $42.2 billion.