Widespread unrest in the House of Representatives over Shell’s high profits

Widespread unrest in the House of Representatives over Shell’s high profits

There is general unease in the House of Representatives about the big gains energy giant Shell made last year. With many citizens struggling to pay their energy bills, the company announced today that it will have made a profit of more than 38 billion euros in 2022.

Shell doubled its profits due to higher oil and gas prices. It was one of the best years in the company’s history. Most of the money goes to the shareholders, and the left and right parties in the legislature don’t really think it’s possible.

During a debate over the new climate law, both opposition and coalition lawmakers called Shell’s profits “exorbitant.” Many believe that oil companies should invest their excess profits in sustainability. Other major oil companies also posted record profits.

get away

Left parties such as GroenLinks, PvdA, SP, Animals for the Animals and Volt want to plunder these profits by imposing an additional tax on oil companies later on. As a result, they have to pay about half of the profits, according to a proposed change in the law. That should bring to the state treasury 1.7 billion euros, where houses can be insulated and equipped with solar panels.

“The time has come to tax these companies fairly on their exorbitant excess profits, and we can adjust that today,” says GroenLinks boss Jesse Klaver. “These ridiculous additional profits are simply inexplicable,” says PvdA colleague Attje Kuiken.

Incidentally, this only applies to the additional profit actually made in the Netherlands, for example in the case of gas and oil production in Drenthe and the North Sea.

It is currently taxed at 33 percent, but according to leftist parties, this should be increased to 49.5 percent.

to central London

Coalition parties VVD, CDA, D66 and ChristenUnie are also troubled by Shell’s top profit, but wonder if anything can be done about it. Since moving its headquarters to London, Shell is no longer a Dutch company and profits are taxed in the UK.

VVD MEP Silvio Erkens noted that PvdA member Joris Thijssen described Shell’s departure as “a blessing for the country” in a tweet that he deleted shortly after. “I wish we didn’t have this separation, we could make a difference now,” said Erkens.

lean back

Minister Jetten (climate and energy) is also angry at the high profits of oil companies. “When you read these numbers, you are astonished. And the first thing that comes to mind is: Couldn’t they lower their prices a little for consumers and businesses?”

However, there is not much he can do as the companies are not based in the Netherlands. “I see very little, there is actually no gap.” Even if we need them for adequate supply, the Netherlands is not in favor of raising the tax on their activities, as there is a risk of oil companies shutting down Dutch gas and oil production altogether.

Source: NOS