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Press release from PR Newswire

Ecopetrol Announces Its Results for the First Quarter of 2012

Monday, April 30, 2012

Ecopetrol Announces Its Results for the First Quarter of 201219:32 EDT Monday, April 30, 2012- The consolidated average production was 743.4 MBOED (1) in the first quarter of 2012, an increase of 8.3% compared to the consolidated average production for the first quarter of 2011. - Revenues, operating income, EBITDA (2) and net income of Ecopetrol S.A. in the first quarter of 2012 grew by 24.1%, 28.9%, 24.2% and 27.6%, respectively, compared to the first quarter of 2011. - Ecopetrol S.A.'s net income for the first quarter of 2012 was COL$4,343.1 billion, equivalent to COL$105.63 per share.BOGOTA, Colombia, April 30, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Ecopetrol S.A. (BVC: ECOPETROL; NYSE: EC; TSX:ECP) announced today its unaudited financial results, both consolidated and unconsolidated, for the first quarter of 2012, prepared and filed in Colombian pesos (COL$) in accordance with the Public Accountancy Legal Framework (Regimen de Contabilidad Publica - RCP) of Colombia's General Accounting Office.(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20090209/ARM001LOGO )Some figures in this report are presented in U.S. dollars (USD) where indicated. Tables shown in the body of the report are rounded to one digit. Figures presented in COP$ billion are equivalent to COP$ one thousand million.Ecopetrol S.A. Financial Results Highlights Unconsolidated(COP$ Billion)1Q 2012 *1Q 2011 *Var. %Total sales15,387.812,399.224.1%Operating profit6,928.35,376.728.9%Net Income4,343.13,404.627.6%Earnings per share (COP$)105.6384.12EBITDA8,061.86,489.324.2%EBITDA Margin52%52%Consolidated(COP$ Billion)1Q 2012 *1Q 2011 *Var. %Total sales17,970.514,387.724.9%Operating profit7,480.75,678.931.7%Net Income4,273.93,110.337.4%EBITDA8,721.76,870.426.9%EBITDA Margin49%48%* Not audited, for illustration purposes onlyIn the opinion of Ecopetrol S.A.'s CEO, Javier Gutierrez: "In the first quarter of 2012 the company continued growing in all its business segments, fulfilling its strategic goals and reaching record levels in volumes produced, transported and sold. Additionally, the favorable price environment, together with our competitive cost structure, allowed reaching record net income and EBITDA during the quarter. In production, we reached a record level of 743 thousand barrels per day, a growth of 8% when compared to the same quarter of 2011.Our hydrocarbon transportation segment continued growing in response to increases in production in Colombia. During the first quarter of the year, daily transportation capacity grew 7.5%. Additionally, we launched the integrity program for the infrastructure of the country with the objective of verifying all of transportation systems in the country to improve and fortify the network to avoid incidents such as the ones in Dosquebradas and Cucuta.  Our refining team continued to advance the project to modernize the Barrancabermeja and Cartagena facilities in order to improve the quality of our products and the returns of the refining and petrochemical business.Sales volume increased 5.6% in the previous twelve months as a result of the market diversification strategy for crude oil and products, in the midst of a favorable price scenario in the international market.Given the record production, higher sale volumes and better prices, financial results were very positive. Revenues were 24% higher than in the first quarter of 2011 and net income amounted to COP$4.3 trillion. The company had a strong cash balance by the end of the first quarter of the year which amounted to COP$17.4 billion.Regarding organizational consolidation, I highlight the continued improvement in the safety and security standards of our operations and the accident frequency index with time losses is a clear evidence of this improvement. The index reduced to 0.99 accident per million of worked hours, from 1.56 a year ago. Finally, in March of 2012 we held our Annual Shareholder Meeting with more than 16.000 shareholders, which is a record attendance. Beside presenting the management report and making the required elections, we approved a historically high dividend of COP$300 per share which was paid in one installment starting on April 25th , to our minority shareholders.To sum up, results of the first quarter are satisfactory and an important step towards the fulfillment of our goals in 2012."  The long version of the report is available in www.ecopetrol.com.co(1) Thousands of barrels of oil equivalent per day. (2) Earnings before taxes, interest, depreciation and amortizationCONTACTS:Investor Relations OfficerAlejandro GiraldoPhone: +571-234-4988Bogota, ColombiaE-mail: investors@ecopetrol.com.coInvestor Relations Analyst:David GarzonPhone: +571-234-5109Bogota, ColombiaE-mail: investors@ecopetrol.com.coWebsite: www.ecopetrol.com.coSOURCE Ecopetrol S.A.