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BP aims to stick with oil and gas to benefit from rising oil prices

June 23/2021

MOSCOW (MRC) -- BP will continue producing hydrocarbons for decades to come and will benefit from rising oil prices even as it reduces output as part of its shift to low-carbon energy, Chief Executive Bernard Looney told Reuters.

The recent rally in crude prices, which climbed on Tuesday to a more than two-year high above USD75 a barrel, is likely to continue, Looney said in an interview at the Reuters Events: Global Energy Transition conference. "There's a very strong possibility that these prices will sustain over the coming years, and if they do, that's very good for our strategy."

Higher oil prices mean BP will be able to raise more cash from selling assets that will go towards building its renewables and low-carbon business, as well as returning money to shareholders via share buybacks, he said. The 50-year old Irishman brushed aside investor concerns that BP might miss out on the rally because of its plan to slash oil output by 40% and grow its renewables output 20 fold by 2030 as part of its energy transition.

"As people understand we're going to be in the hydrocarbons business for decades to come, that concern has gone away a little bit," Looney said. "We want to run the best hydrocarbons business possible. We don't want to run the biggest hydrocarbons business possible."

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. They have recovered strongly so far this year but are still around 30% below their pre-COVID-19 crisis levels.

"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. Looney said BP's energy transition will continue to evolve over time but added that he feels "at a good place" at the moment, even as investor pressure mounts on oil companies to tackle greenhouse gas emissions.

"We have leaned into this as hard as we can," Looney said. "We will continue to evolve the strategy, we will continue to evolve our targets. They will undoubtedly get bolder over time."

As per MRC, BP said it expected to hit its USD35 bn net debt target during the first quarter of 2021 after faster-than-expected progress on its disposals programme and a "strong" quarter driven by recovering oil prices. The oil giant had said previously it expected to meet its debt forecast by the fourth quarter of 2021 at the earliest, down from a level of USD51.4 bn a year ago and USD38.9 bn at the end of 2020.

As MRC informed earlier, Rosneft together with BP will develop the hydrogen business. Together they will study the prospects for new projects using renewable energy sources (RES), as well as the use of technologies for capturing, utilizing and storing CO2. Earlier in Russia, Gazprom and Novatek spoke about their intention to create a hydrogen business and new technologies for the disposal of harmful emissions.

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated PE consumption totalled 744,130 tonnes in the first four month of 2021, up by 4% year on year. Shipments of all PE grades increased. At the same time, PP deliveries to the Russian market were 523,900 tonnes in January-April 2021, up by 55% year on year. Supply of homopolymer PP and PP block copolymers increased, whereas shipments of PP random copolymers decreased.


mrcplast.com
Author:Anna Larionova
Tags:petroleum products, PP, PE, neftegaz, petrochemistry, British petroleum, UK.
Category:General News
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