BP selling South American assets

LONDON — BP says it has agreed to sell its oil and gas exploration business in Colombia for $1.9 billion to a consortium of Ecopetrol, Colombia’s national oil company, and Talisman of Canada.

The deal announced yesterday is the latest in BP’s plans to sell up to $30 billion of assets to cover costs related to the Gulf of Mexico oil spill.

The company last month agreed to sell assets in the U.S., Canada and Egypt to Apache Corp. for $7 billion. It also plans to sell assets in Pakistan and Vietnam.

BP last week revealed it has set aside $32.2 billion to cover spill costs as it posted a $17 billion second quarter loss.

It will receive a cash deposit for the Colombian sale, which is expects to complete by the end of the year.

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