BG profits flat after civil unrest in North Africa


First-quarter profits at BG Group were unchanged on last year after civil unrest in North Africa curbed production.

Political turmoil in Egypt and Tunisia dented oil and gas production by 5% and prompted the company to cut its output forecast for this year.

The company reported an operating profit of $1.96bn (£1.2bn, 1.7bn euros).

The figures left BG as the only faller among the 100 top company shares.

Profits were also hit by extensive flooding in Queensland Australia, where it produces gas.

Maintenance also knocked out production from two of the company's facilities in the North Sea.

BG also took a tax charge of $265m to reflect the rise in the offshore drilling tax announced in the March budget.

The company said that that increased the company's effective tax rate from 42% to 45%.

BG said that as a result, it now expected only modest production growth for 2011, whereas it had hoped for growth of 7%.

It said that in the longer term, its targets remained unaffected.

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