28 July 2009 08:50 [Source: ICIS news]
However, the segment - which includes the energy giant's aromatics and acetyls businesses - reported a replacement cost profit before interest and tax for the three months ended 30 June of $680m, up 26% when compared to the second quarter of 2008.
The company said that improved operational performance and a stronger supply and trading contribution allowed the firm to perform better than it did in the previous year.
“For the first half these two factors have more than offset the adverse impact of weaker refining margins,” it said.
On a half-yearly basis, BP’s replacement cost profit before interest and tax was flat at $1.77bn.
The company’s worldwide chemical production during the second quarter dropped 23% year on year to 2,647,000 tonnes.
“The International Businesses continued to perform well with some recovery in petrochemicals margins, despite volumes that were depressed by more than 24% in the first half compared to a year ago, and sustained delivery in Lubricants,” it added.
Going forward, BP said that refining margins in the third quarter were lower than those in the second quarter and substantially below 2008 levels.
“Refining availability is expected to remain higher than in 2008, but otherwise the outlook continues to be challenging with high distillate inventories and continuing low demand,” the company said.
($1 = €0.70)
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