BOGOTA, Colombia, March 23, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --Ecopetrol S.A. (BVC: ECOPETROL;NYSE: EC; TSX: ECP) reports that the Meeting of Shareholders held March 22, 2012 in Bogota, approved payment of an ordinary dividend of two hundred sixty three Colombian pesos (COL$263) per share and an extraordinary dividend of thirty seven Colombian pesos (COL$37) per share, for a total dividend of three hundred Colombian pesos (COL$300) per share.
In response to the request of the minority shareholders and with the approval of the Ministry of the Treasury and Public Credit (representing the Nation as majority shareholder), and considering that the 2012 cash flow makes it financially viable, the Meeting for the first and only time approved a lump sum payment of the total dividend to minority shareholders beginning April 25.
The ordinary dividend payable to the Nation will be paid in three installments on April 25 and July 27, 2012, with the last payment between November 15, 2012 and January 15, 2013, according to the Company cash flow. The extraordinary dividend will be paid to the Nation in the twelve months following the date of the Meeting of Shareholders.
Pursuant to the latest amendment of the current Colombian regulation, the dividend will be paid to shareholders who are registered as holders of shares as of five trading days before the date of the respective payment.
Ecopetrol is Colombia's largest integrated oil & gas company, where it accounts for 60% of total production. It is one of the top 50 oil companies in the world and the fourth largest oil company in Latin America. The Company is also involved in exploration and production activities in Brazil, Peru and the United States Gulf Coast, and owns the main refineries in Colombia, most of the network of oil and multiple purpose pipelines in the country, petrochemical plants, and is entering into the biofuels business.
This release contains forward-looking statements relating to the prospects of the business, estimates for operating and financial results, and those related to growth prospects of Ecopetrol. These are merely projections and, as such, are based exclusively on the expectations of management concerning the future of the business and its continued access to capital to fund the Company's business plan. Such forward-looking statements depend, substantially, on changes in market conditions, government regulations, competitive pressures, the performance of the Colombian economy and the industry, among other factors; therefore, they are subject to change without prior notice.