A logo on a British Petroleum petrol station is seen in London
A logo on a British Petroleum petrol station is seen in London April 30, 2010. REUTERS

Shares in BP were up on the FTSE 100 in morning trading after the energy giant said it would be selling off its wholly-owned subsidiary ARCO Aluminum Inc. to a Japanese consortium.

ARCO, which produces rolled aluminium sheet, will be sold for $680 million to the consortium, which consists of Sumitomo Light Metal Industries, Ltd. (40 per cent), Furukawa Sky Aluminum Corp. (35 per cent), Sumitomo Corporation (20 per cent), Itochu Corporation (2 per cent), and Itochu Metals Corporation (3 per cent).

The deal is expected to be completed in the third quarter of 2011 and is part of BP's strategy to divest itself of non-core assets in a bid to make up for the costs of last year's oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. By the end of 2011 BP hopes to meet its target of divesting itself of $30 billion worth of assets, so far the group has agreed terms for the sale of $24 billion worth of assets

Bob Dudley, Chief Executive of BP, said, "Although a strong business, ARCO Aluminum is clearly a non-strategic asset for BP. Today's agreement will deliver an attractive price for the business, unlocking its value for our shareholders."

By 10:20 shares in BP were up 0.85 per cent on the FTSE 100 to 474.00 pence per share.