Wintershall with record profit

Kassel, (PresseBox) - .
- Oil and gas producer achieves annual net income of over one billion euros
- Activities in the North Sea and Russia expanded
- Natural gas trading segment profitable

Germany's largest producer of crude oil and natural gas with operations worldwide, Wintershall, passed the billion euro mark with its annual net income for the first time in the company's over 100-year history. With an increase in sales of twelve percent to 12.1 billion euros (2010: 10.8), the after-tax profit of the BASF subsidiary rose by 15 percent to 1.1 billion euros (2010: 0.9). Owing to the lower contribution from Libya, however, EBIT (earnings before interest and tax) fell by 10 percent to 2.1 billion euros (2010: 2.3). "Our result for the year shows that with our company's focus on core regions combined with partnerships and technologies, we are on the right track," Rainer Seele, Chairman of the Board of Executive Di-rectors at Wintershall, explained at the company's Annual Press Conference in Kassel. The company plans further growth in the coming years with the already agreed expansion of its production operations in Siberia, which it runs together with the Russian gas producer OAO Gazprom, and the development of new reserves discovered in the North Sea. Wintershall also intends to step up its activities in the Arab region significantly. Both business segments, the exploration and production of oil and gas, as well as natural gas trading, contributed to the good result in 2011.

"The oil market is currently undergoing an enormous stress test. Not least the sanctions imposed on Iran and the tense political situation have driven the oil price up even further," Seele told journalists in Kassel. This showed that the oil price was still an indicator of the global political and economic mood, he said. The economy would remain dependent on crude oil for a long time, Seele underlined, adding that the energy hunger of the emerging nations was already offsetting all the energy saving measures in the rest of the world. "Hence, we are expecting oil demand to rise until 2035." The current situation on the energy markets was making it generally clear that Europe needs to step up its efforts in developing new sources and securing transport paths. "In Europe we must learn to position ourselves better in the major production regions of the world," Seele said. "That also means expanding existing partnerships." The example of Germany and Russia showed how successful such partnerships can be - especially in natural gas trading, Seele added. Russia had also been Germany's most important oil supplier for 20 years. "With our successful joint natural gas projects along the entire value added chain, the partnership between Gazprom and Wintershall undoubtedly represents a blueprint for cross-border cooperation in the energy sector," Dr. Seele explained.

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Forward-looking statements and forecasts

This report contains forward-looking statements based on current expectations, assumptions and forecasts by the board of executive directors, as well as on the information currently available to that board. Forward-looking statements are not deemed to be guarantees of the future developments and results set out therein. Future developments and results are in fact dependent on a large number of factors; they contain different risks and imponderables and are based on assumptions that may not be accurate. We do not assume any obligation to update the forward-looking statements made in this document.

Wintershall Holding GmbH

Wintershall Holding GmbH, based in Kassel, Germany, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BASF in Ludwigshafen. The company has been active in the exploration and production of crude oil and natural gas for over 80 years. Wintershall focuses on selected core regions, where the company has built up a high level of regional and technological expertise. These are Europe, North Africa, South America, as well as Russia and the Caspian Sea region. In addition, these operations are complemented by the company's growing exploration activities in the Arabian Gulf. Today, the company employs more than 2,000 staff worldwide from 35 nations and is now Germany's largest crude oil and natural gas producer. With the natural gas trading and transport subsidiaries it operates together with Russia's Gazprom, the BASF subsidiary is also an important gas supplier on the German and European market.

Wintershall. Shaping the Future.

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