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Tax and transparency

Our operations generate tens of billions of revenue each year for governments around the world.

These funds can help support a country’s economy and contribute to local development and social services. We believe greater transparency in payments to governments, and how they are used, is important for building trust between businesses such as ours and the communities we work alongside. Transparency is also an important means to fight corruption.

We work openly with governments on matters of taxes and royalties. We are a founder and board member of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI). This initiative requires both governments and companies to disclose revenues received from oil and mineral activities.

In 2003, Shell was the first company to publish the taxes, royalties and other payments made to the Nigerian government, with the government’s permission and support. Shell started to voluntarily publish an annual revenue transparency report in 2012. It provides an overview of taxes, royalties and the revenues we pay to host governments in certain key countries in respect of our activities, where such disclosure is not prohibited by the host government. We took this step to reinforce efforts to increase transparency on revenues for governments ahead of mandatory reporting.

To help improve accountability, we support a mandatory global reporting rule for extractive industries, in line with EITI goals to achieve greater transparency. Generally, we support the principles of regulations that we see in the EU and the USA to improve accountability and good governance, keeping in mind we must respect the laws of countries where we operate as some governments prohibit disclosure of certain information.

In 2014, Shell paid globally $14.3 billion in income taxes and $3.9 billion in royalties. We collected $72.7 billion in excise duties, sales taxes and similar taxes on our fuel and other products on behalf of governments.

For further details and a breakdown of our payments made to governments by country, see