Energy and Environment

Government’s hostility to oil and gas risks future investment

Andy Mayer appears on talkTV

IEA Chief Operating Officer and Energy Analyst Andy Mayer has appeared on talkTV to discuss news that BP has made record profits in the last year.

Andy said:

“[The oil and gas industry] is a commodity business, so you get these huge swings and cycles in prices. For example, in 2020, they made a £20bn loss because the pandemic crashed markets. That loss was incurred by the company and was then added to because they had to divest all of their Russian operations,

“They took a risk, they lost on that risk, and now some of their other bets are coming good. Some of those are in the UK and when they are in the UK, we all benefit because there are gains to the Exchequer, employment in the country, and they invest in innovation.

“The question is, does the UK want companies like BP, Shell, and all the rest – many of whom are now large players in the UK – to continue investing? If the answer to that question is yes, we should celebrate the fact that when these companies do well, we all benefit and when they do poorly, it’s their shareholders are the ones taking the hit.”

You can watch Andy’s full appearance here (40:08).