Feb 12, 2023

Why are BP, Shell, and other oil giants making so much money right now?

The big oil companies - from the UK-based BP and Shell to international giants such as ExxonMobil and Norway's Equinor - have been announcing astonishing profit figures. Oil companies make money by locating oil and gas reserves buried in rocks under the earth's surface, and drilling down to release them. So when oil prices soared after the invasion of Ukraine, the money these companies made from selling oil and gas massively increased as well. Oil companies already pay a tax on their profits from oil and gas production in the UK of 40% - which is higher than taxes on other companies. Many oil companies lost billions from Russian investments last year - BP wrote off $24bn of investments in the Russian oil company Rosneft, for example.

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