Higher Oil Prices to Make Asset Sales Easier, BP Says

June 22, 2021

For illustration only - BP's Andrew platform in the UK North Sea. (Credit: BP)
For illustration only - BP's Andrew platform in the UK North Sea. (Credit: BP)

BP will be in the hydrocarbons business for decades to come, Chief Executive Bernard Looney told Reuters on Tuesday, while high oil prices are set to make its asset sales and transition to lower-carbon energy easier.

Referring to worries that its green strategy could hit profits, Looney, in an interview at the Reuters Events: Global Energy Transition conference, said: "As people understand we're going to be in the hydrocarbons business for decades to come, that concern has gone away a little bit."

"High oil prices are very good for our strategy and our shareholders will benefit from that, especially through our buyback programme," he said.

Looney took office in 2020 with an ambitious plan to rapidly grow BP’s renewable energy business, while cutting oil and gas output by 40% by 2030.

But BP’s shares hit their lowest since the mid-1990s late last year, a bigger drop than any of its rivals, amid falling oil prices and investor concerns over its strategy.

"What we offer investors is a stable, resilient dividend," Looney said. "We're going to grow value from this company over the next five years."

"We're going to offer you a sustainable investment proposition that I believe will grow value," he added.

(Reporting by Dmitry Zdhannikov and Noah Browning; Editing by Louise Heavens and Jan Harvey)




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