BP profits halved in 2023 amid lower oil prices, however the oil giant revealed better than expected performance in the last three months of the year.
Underlying replacement cost profits were £11 billion which is down from 50% from £22.1 billion in 2022 when oil prices surged amid Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.
On Tuesday shares rose by 6% after the oil giant reported better than expected profits in the last three months of 2023 and BP increased their dividend by 10% in the fourth quarter.
BP’s new chief executive, Murray Auchincloss, said: “Looking back, 2023 was a year of strong operational performance with real momentum in delivery right across the business.
“And as we look ahead, our destination remains unchanged… focused on growing the value of BP.”
But campaign group Global Witness hit out at what it said were “reckless shareholder payouts” at BP.
It claimed BP’s shareholders’ returns in 2023 – 12.7 billion (£10.2 billion) – could “cover the projected cost of natural disasters for the next seven years in the UK”.
Jonathan Noronha-Gant, Global Witness senior campaigner, said: “Shareholders should want to protect their long-term positions.
“That means demanding a rapid clean energy transition for companies like BP. These reckless shareholder payouts do the opposite.”
Joseph Evans, researcher at the think tank the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR), said, “BP has decided to prioritise its shareholders over investing in the green transition.
“It’s clear that BP and other fossil-fuel giants can’t be trusted to drive the green transition: they will always prioritise their shareholders over the needs of the economy and the planet.”