Fury as Shell makes £1.5m an hour profit

FURY greeted the announcement today that Royal Dutch Shell made a £13.9 billion profit in 2007 - a new record for a UK company.

FURY greeted the announcement today that Royal Dutch Shell made a £13.9 billion profit in 2007 - a new record for a UK company.

It comes at a time when motorists are paying forecourt petrol prices of more than £1 a litre.

A union leader labelled the profits - the equivalent of £1.5million an hour - “obscene” and made a fresh call for a windfall tax on oil companies.

Shell's profits haul for 2007 was 9 per cent higher than a year ago and comes after the price of crude oil rose towards 100 US dollars a barrel.


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The union Unite urged the government to take action, especially because of rising energy prices.

Joint general secretary Tony Woodley said: “Shell shareholders are doing very nicely whilst the rest of us, the stakeholders, are paying the price and struggling.'”

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Mr Woodley said that amount of money, added to oil industry profits he put at over £50 billion in the last three years, was “quite frankly obscene'.

He added: "This government took the brave step of putting a windfall tax on the greedy privatised utilities to fund the New Deal. With pensions injustices still to be addressed, fortune should favour the brave again and the greedy oil companies should be asked to contribute for the common good.

“The oil companies can maintain their investment programmes, maintain their explorations, pay their normal taxes, maintain good returns to shareholders but still put their hands in their treasure chests and pay a windfall tax. These companies can afford it. Many pensioners cannot afford to live. It's as simple as that.”

The profits are likely to spark a row because of increased prices which have led to a big rise in the cost of petrol in recent years.

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