BP Stems Oil-Output Decline at ACG Field After Azeri Criticism

BP Plc (BP/) stemmed the pace of decline at its Azeri-Chirag-Guneshli oilfield in the Caspian Sea after Azerbaijan blamed the U.K. company for a slump in output at the nation’s largest deposit last year.

The field, known as ACG, delivered 16.4 million metric tons of oil in the first half of 2013, down 2.4 percent from a year earlier, BP’s office in Baku said today by e-mail. That compares with a 12 percent drop a year earlier.

The company replaced regional managers and brought in advisers from around the world to pare the decline in production at ACG after Azeri President Ilham Aliyev accused the London-based company of “grave mistakes” at the field.

ACG accounted for 77 percent of the country’s oil output last year. Partners in the project include State Oil Co. of Azerbaijan, or Socar, Exxon Mobil Corp., Chevron Corp. (CVX), Statoil ASA (STL), Itochu Corp. (8001), Turkiye Petrolleri AO and ONGC Videsh Ltd.

BP also said today that the Shah Deniz natural-gas field in Azerbaijan pumped 4.8 billion cubic meters of gas in the first half of the year, up from 3.36 billion cubic meters a year earlier. Azerbaijan exports gas to Turkey, Russia and Georgia.

To contact the reporter on this story: Zulfugar Agayev in Baku at zagayev@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Hellmuth Tromm at htromm@bloomberg.net

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