LONDON, Oct. 30 (Xinhua) -- British oil giant BP reported a solid increase of profits in the third quarter of this year, allowing it to raise its dividend by 12.5 percent, said a statement released by BP on Tuesday.
BP said that its replacement cost profit, a key industry benchmark, topped 5.2 billion U.S. dollars, an increase of 40 percent over the previous quarter, but less than the 5.3 billion U.S. dollars a year earlier.
The company's revenue of 93.1 billion U.S. dollars was also down from 97.7 billion U.S. dollars in the same period last year.
As result of the good performance, BP raised its quarterly dividend by 12.5 percent to 9 cents per share.
It said the third quarter's results benefited from a strong performance in its downstream business.
In the upstream, performance was similar to the second quarter as increased production from new projects and completion of turnarounds in the Gulf of Mexico was offset by seasonal maintenance in North Sea and Alaska and the impact of Hurricane Isaac in the Gulf.
The oil giant said it expected to generate future growth through increased investment in new upstream projects in higher-margin areas and through new access and exploration, pledging to focus its business portfolio more around its strong existing positions and its key operating strengths.
"BP's performance and the strong progress we are making in transforming the company give us the confidence to increase distributions to our shareholders," said group chief executive Bob Dudley.
"We are on track with our strategy to 2014 and are laying the right foundations for sustainable growth during the coming decade," said Dudley.