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updated: 3/22/2013 7:48 AM

BP to buy back $8 billion of shares after completing TNK-BP sale

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Bloomberg News

BP Plc will buy back $8 billion of shares from investors after completing the sale of 50 percent of Russian oil producer TNK-BP.

The buyback will return the original sum invested in the venture in 2003, the London-based company said in a statement today. The program will take eight to 12 months to complete and more than offset the earnings per share lost from selling the stake in Russia's third-largest producer, BP said.

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"We have released cash equivalent to six years of BP's anticipated future dividends from TNK-BP," Chief Executive Officer Bob Dudley said in the statement. "BP is moving on to the next phase of its business in Russia."

After selling its TNK-BP stake to OAO Rosneft, BP will become the second-biggest investor in Russia's largest oil company with a 19.8 percent shareholding. After buying shares, BP will retain $4.5 billion in cash from deal.

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