French oil giant, Total, on Friday reported a 7.0% drop in net profit of the first quarter 2012, net fell to just over USD 4.8 billion. Total said in a statement that its adjusted earnings, which take into account external participations and stock changes, fell to USD 4.0 in the first three months. At the same time, sales rose 11 % to USD 67.4 billion when compared with the same period in 2012, Total CEO Christophe de Margerie said adding that "in the context of oil prices that were favourable" but given a chemical and refining environment that was "more difficult", he was "satisfied with the net income." The company also reported that its oil production during the first quarter was stable from output a year ago at 2.37 million barrels of oil equivalent per day. De Margerie also emphasised the importance of safety Total, especially in view of the recent, massive gas leak from a Total-operated platform, Elgin, in the British North Sea.