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Shell reminds us of the moral bankruptcy of the corporate elite

By STEVE HAWKES, Business Editor: Published: 3 February 2012

SHELL is coining it as pump prices soar — after yesterday unveiling an £18BILLION profits bonanza.

The oil giant sparked outrage by boasting it raked in almost £2.2million an HOUR last year.

Hard-up motorists — now facing forecourt prices that are almost back to record levels — were left fuming.

Almost all of the 54 per cent surge in profits was down to the rocketing price of crude.

Shell, which also benefited from rising gas prices, insisted it barely made a penny at the pumps. But the RAC’s Adrian Tink raged: “Motorists understandably feel they are being taken for a ride when they see figures like these. We understand they don’t make a large amount at the pump but they make a lot of money when the oil price is going up.

“That’s the reason petrol is going up too. Motorists feel they are getting the thin end of the wedge.”

The bumper profits come as diesel hovers just below the all-time high it hit last May — 143p per litre. Unions were aghast after the grasping multinational last month scrapped its final salary pension scheme for new recruits, claiming it was too expensive.

Len McCluskey, general secretary of Unite, said: “Shell reminds us of the moral bankruptcy of the corporate elite.”



SHELL’S success is good for Britain as tax goes to the Treasury and dividends flow into our pension funds.

But something is not working.

Shell has made a packet because of the surge in energy prices on a global scale — blamed for sending UK fuel and gas bills through the roof.

It’s time to square the circle.

SUN EDITORIAL 2 February 2012: Shell shocked

IT’S the same old depressing story on petrol prices.

Shell’s annual profits hit £18billion – but it says it cannot do anything about pump prices at record levels.

Really? How about using a fraction of the £7billion paid to shareholders to ease the burden on customers?

Boss Peter Voser promises massive investments over the next few years that will “benefit everyone”.

Everyone who’s a Shell executive or shareholder, presumably. Millions of motorists cannot afford to drive.

And that’s because fuel firms are taking them for a ride.

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