BP to Complete Maintenance on Central Azeri Platform This Month

BP Plc said it will resume drilling on the Central Azeri platform once scheduled maintenance is completed this month.

“We have temporarily stopped drilling activities on the Central Azeri platform due to the planned rig maintenance,” Tamam Bayatly, a BP spokeswoman in Azerbaijan, said in an e-mailed statement late yesterday.

Central Azeri produced an average 216,000 barrels a day in the first quarter, she said. “This is slightly lower than what was expected because of certain planned activities that we undertook as part of normal operations,” according to Bayatly.

Azeri oil output has fallen this year because a 2008 gas leak kept the BP-led venture from drilling at a Caspian Sea field, ANS television said on June 19, citing Rovnaq Abdullayev, head of the State Oil Co. of Azerbaijan.

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