BP released fourth quarter and full-year results on Tuesday, noting that 2017 was one of the strongest years in BP’s recent history.
“We delivered operationally and financially, with very strong earnings in the Downstream, Upstream production up 12 percent, and our finances rebalanced,” Bob Dudley was quoted as saying in a press release. “And we did all this while maintaining safe and reliable operations,” Dudley added.
The BP CEO said the company is entering the second year of BP’s five-year plan with real momentum and is increasingly confident that BP can continue to deliver growth across its business, improving cash flows and returns for shareholders to 2021 and beyond.
“At the same time, we are embracing the energy transition, seeking new opportunities in a changing, lower-carbon world,” Dudley said.
Underlying replacement cost profit was $6.2 billion for the full year of 2017 and $2.1 billion for the fourth quarter, compared with $2.6 billion and $400 million for the full year and fourth quarter of 2016 respectively.
Operating cash flow for 2017, excluding Gulf of Mexico oil spill payments, was $24.1 billion, compared with $17.6 billion in 2016, BP said. Gulf of Mexico oil spill payments in 2017 were $5.2 billion, compared with $6.9 billion in 2016.
Downstream earnings were very strong, with an underlying replacement cost profit of $7.0 billion, 24 percent higher than 2016.
Operational reliability was high, with refining availability and Upstream BP-operated plant reliability both at 95 percent.
Seven new major projects delivered, boosting oil and gas production. Upstream production, excluding BP’s share of Rosneft production, was 12 percent higher than 2016, the highest since 2010.
Including Rosneft, production was 3.6 million barrels of oil equivalent a day, 10 percent higher than 2016. Oil and gas realisations were also 25 percent higher.
Exploration delivered the most successful year for BP since 2004, with around 1 billion barrel of equivalent resources discovered.
Dividends remained unchanged at 10 cents per share.
BP began share buybacks in the fourth quarter, spending $343 million, fully offsetting the dilution from scrip dividends issued in the third quarter.
Non-operating items in the fourth quarter, which are excluded from underlying profit, included a $0.9 billion charge for US tax changes and a $1.7 billion post-tax charge relating to a further provision for claims associated with the oil spill.