LONDON, July 25 (Xinhua) -- BP's Chief Executive Tony Hayward has been negotiating his exit from the company, the BBC reported on Sunday.
According to the report, a formal announcement is likely within the next 24 hours.
Local newspaper Telegraph reported that after a weekend of detailed negotiations over Hayward's severance package, it now appears almost certain that he will announce his departure ahead of BP's half year results on Tuesday.
BP Chairman Carl-Henric Svanberg is now believed to agree that Hayward should go and that BP needs to announce a complete change of operational culture.
Bob Dudley, director of BP's oil spill unit, is now front-runner to succeed Hayward at the top and has enjoyed a better media profile since he took over operational control in the Gulf of Mexico, the report said.
The BBC reported while BP had been preparing for a change at the top for some time, the company was waiting until progress had been made on stemming the leak and until it was possible to quantify the financial costs of the disaster.
Hayward, who has worked for the company for 28 years, has been heavily criticized for his handling of the Gulf of Mexico oil leak.
It is expected to reveal a provision of up to 30 billion U.S. dollars for the costs of capping the well, compensation claims and fines to be paid.
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