After 28 years of joint administration, BP PLC Thursday handed over the operation of the Cupiagua field in Colombia to its partner, state-controlled oil firm Ecopetrol SA.
BP had operated the field and had a 31% stake in the venture, while Ecopetrol had 50% and French Total SA (TOT) held the remaining 19%. The handover had been planned.
From now on, Ecopetrol said in a Thursday statement, it will run the field, which produces 26,000 barrels a day. Cupiagua is in Colombia’s central Casanare province.
The increase of Ecopetrol’s share of the field’s output was already factored into the company’s target of production for this year. The Colombian state oil firm expects its total output to surpass 600,000 barrels of oil equivalent a day by Dec. 31.
Ecopetrol plans to invest $28 million this year in Cupiagua.
BP currently operates other fields in Casanare in partnership with Ecopetrol and has long been scheduled to hand over those operations to the state firm between 2016 and 2020. BP currently produces about 24,000 barrels-equivalent of oil a day from these operations.
The company also explores oil and gas in some areas in Colombia.
BP recently announced it was planning to sell assets to cover costs related to the company’s deep-sea oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico.
The chief executive of BP’s Colombian operation, Alberto Galvis, told reporters he had no information on whether the U.K. giant’s Colombian assets were to be put up for sale.
On Thursday, he told Dow Jones Newswires there is nothing new to report on the issue. (Inti Landauro / Dow Jones)