Weaker than expected quarterly profits and a new charge for the Gulf of Mexico oil spill are overshadowing BP’s long-awaited return to a dividend payout for its shareholders.
BP’s dividend is just half what it was paying before the Gulf of Mexico disaster.
Chief Executive Bob Dudley also says they are going to try to reach a settlement with their Russian partners in troubled joint venture TNK-BP.
The Russians are angry about a proposed exploration deal between BP and state controlled energy firm Rosneft.
“The company has clearly pinned its hopes on Russia, but the new joint venture has already gone wrong, antagonising the TNK-BP partners … There remains substantial uncertainty surrounding the company,” said Dougie Youngson, an oil industry analyst at Arbuthnot Securities.
In comments along with its fourth-quarter results, BP held out the prospect of long-term growth via new exploration partnerships and a fresh focus on getting oil and gas out of the ground.