BP: Russia still key as production set to dip

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BP, the U.K. oil giant, announced a 34 percent rise in profits Tuesday – but its results highlighted concerns over its important Russian joint venture.

The company's 19.75 percent stake in Rosneft is regularly cited as one of the most lucrative deals which could be threatened if sanctions imposed against Russia in the light of the Ukrainian crisis escalate.

The company confirmed these concerns in the statement accompanying its second-quarter results: "If further international sanctions are imposed on Rosneft or new sanctions are imposed on Russia or other Russian individuals or entities, this could have a material adverse impact on our relationship with and investment in Rosneft, our business and strategic objectives in Russia and our financial position and results of operations."

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BP also warned that third-quarter production would be lower than the second quarter, blaming seasonal slowing. Output from the Gulf of Mexico helped push overall underlying production of oil and gas, excluding Russia, up by over 3 percent compared to a year earlier.

The company also hiked its provision for litigation related to the Gulf of Mexico oil by $260 million, bringing the total potential bill for the accident to $43 billion.

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