Outrage at Shell’s £7bn profits amid war and cost of living crisis

Shell gas station

Amid war and a cost of living crisis, the oil firm Shell are making a killing. At over £7bn, the firm’s quarterly profits are their highest ever. However, the windfall comes as oil supplies are disrupted by the war in Ukraine, and bills have soared for ordinary people.

This is despite Russia, a major global exporter of oil, being hit by sanctions. All firms, including Shell, have reduced operations there. Campaigning groups like Greenpeace have already called for a special windfall tax on the giant’s profits.


Others took to Twitter to air their views on the firm’s unprecedented quarter – including trade unionists, who called it “pure greed”:

One economist called for a 100% tax on Shell’s massive profits:

A professor of accounting said that the government had done nothing to intervene. This meant the gains were nothing short of profiteering:

Meanwhile, a Labour MP suggested that the energy market was rigged in favour of the rich:

Having a good war?

Another social media user called for a tax to pay for people’s energy bills. They said Shell was “having a good war”:

Even the editor of the Financial Times said an exceptional tax in a time of conflict was justified:

Another Twitter user quipped that Shell must have only eaten cheaper brands to make such a fortune. This was a reference to Tory suggestions that people reduce the quality of their food in the cost-of-living crisis:

Helpfully, someone else pointed out that Boris Johnson had already expressed his view on oil firm profits. Johnson previously told the BBC that energy giants “don’t want” a windfall tax – huge surprise there.


Oil firms are making massive profits while ordinary people are afraid to turn their heating on. Boris’s excuse that big oil doesn’t “want” to pay taxes doesn’t hold water. In theory at least, it’s the job of government to intervene in the public’s interest. There are no excuses not to enforce a windfall tax on Shell’s billions.

Featured image via Wikimedia Commons/Shell Gas Station, cropped to 770 x 403, licenced under CC BY 2.0.

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  • Show Comments
    1. When our MPs take second and third jobs offered by companies and backhanders of them then nothing will change has companies make fantastic profits the peasants suffer untill that day MPs work for their people’s then nowt will change

    2. According to the PM, energy companies are going to have to spend their ill-gotten gains on increasing production and infrastructure as a result of the war in Ukraine. I’d like to see some evidence that this is happening before taking his word for it.
      In any case, the stock market is supposed to be a gamble – “profits can go down as well as up”. Where is it decreed shareholders must be protected from financial loss? Why should the public suffer to protect the unearned income of the wealthy?
      Oil companies will have MPs on their payroll. Time to ban second jobs.

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