In the first quarter of 2012, adjusted net profit was €2.48 billion, up 13% compared with a year ago as a result of better operating performance. This positive effect was partially offset by higher financial charges, which increased by €207 million, and a higher consolidated tax rate, up approximately 6 percentage points.

The physical impact was the result of a high fluctuating E&P, and to the revision of the so called rough impacts inactive over 2011. Looking at more detail at the exploration and production. In the first quarter of 2012, in reported liquids and gas production of 1,674,000 barrel of oil equivalent per day, representing a small decrease from the first quarter of 2011, down by 10,000 BOE per day or 0.6%.

Excluding price effects, which reduced Q1 production by 14,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day, compared to the year-end earlier quarter, the production for the first quarter was marginally higher, up by 0.2% driven by the ongoing recovery in Libyan production and start up ramp up of new fields in Australia, Egypt and United States. These positives offset negatives from the sale of minor assets and some minor unplanned production losses.

The exploration and production division would have thought in an adjusted operating profit of €5.1 billion, increasing by €180 million or 24% on the back of a stronger oil and gas prices and the recovery in Libyan activities.

In gas and power, overall volumes sold including consolidated and associated companies fell by 5.4% to 29.9 Bcf, decline is mainly due to weak demand and higher competitive pressure in Europe.

In Italy, overall sales rose by 1.4% with higher demand from residential user and higher sales to the network balancing market more than compensating declining volumes sold to power generation and wholesalers. The gas and power division reported an adjusted operating profit of €1.5 billion, increasing by €546 million, or 57% from the first quarter of 2011.

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