Colombia's Ecopetrol 1Q net profit drops 20.2% from year ago

5/6/2013

Colombia's Ecopetrol 1Q net profit drops 20.2% from year ago

BY DARCY CROWE

BOGOTA -- Ecopetrol reported a 20% drop in its consolidated net income during the 1Q compared with a year earlier, due to lower global prices for crude oil.

Ecopetrol said its 1Q consolidated net income was $1.97 billion compared with $2.33 billion a year earlier.

The firm's consolidated EBITDA, which is an indicator of a company's cash flow, was $4 billion in the first quarter, down 15% from the year-earlier quarter.

Ecopetrol's heavily traded shares on the Colombian Stock Exchange rose 0.7% to end the session.

Ecopetrol has enjoyed a sharp increase in oil production in recent years as the military pushed a decade’s old insurgency deeper into the mountains, allowing oil companies to boost their exploration efforts and invest in upgrading production in operating fields.

The guerillas, meanwhile, abandoned their efforts to control territory and turned instead to carrying out hit-and-run ambushes mostly directed against Colombia's oil industry.

A surge in oil pipeline bombings stalled oil production periodically last year and the guerrillas have continued the attacks in recent months.

The company's oil production, including its affiliates, rose to 790,800 boepd in the 1Q, up 6.4% from a year earlier.

Outside Colombia, Ecopetrol is also involved in exploration and production activities in Brazil, Peru and the United States Gulf Coast.

Dow Jones Newswires

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