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Transparency initiatives

We constantly review our tax disclosures for compliance, taking into account transparency initiatives. We also provide constructive input to industry groups and international organisations, such as the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) and the B Team Responsible Tax Working Group (B Team).

The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) has set out Sustainability Reporting Guidelines that seek to help companies report more transparently on their environmental, social and governance (ESG) performance.

In 2021, the GRI introduced the GRI 207 standard which encourages companies to publicly and comprehensively disclose country-by-country corporate income tax payments. GRI 207 provides best practice reporting guidance. We have publicly disclosed country-by-country income tax payments, according to OECD guidelines, since we published our Tax Contribution Report for 2018.

Shell seeks to meet the mandatory elements of the GRI 207 requirements. As to the GRI 207 requirement for companies to report non-aggregated country data for entities that are consolidated, we follow OECD rules and report aggregated data.

In 2021, at the World Economic Forum, Shell joined a global coalition of businesses to report on a range of ESG performance factors. These Stakeholder Capitalism Metrics comprise 21 disclosures which are mapped to the UN Sustainable Development Goals. One of the core metrics is for companies to disclose their total tax borne.

Shell has worked with the largest employers’ organisation in the Netherlands, the VNO-NCW, on an initiative to improve tax governance and transparency for companies listed in that country.

In May 2022, the VNO-NCW published the Tax Governance Code (TGC), which Shell helped initiate and develop. Given the scale of our activities in the Netherlands, we have voluntarily signed up to the TGC.

The TGC is based on existing transparency initiatives such as the B Team Responsible Tax Principles, the Global Reporting Initiative and the World Economic Forum Stakeholder Capitalism Metrics. Our tax activities therefore already largely comply with the TGC. We will continue to review and improve our tax disclosures so that they are meaningful to our stakeholders.

Tax Governance Code (TGC)

In this report

A. Approach to Tax: Tax Strategy and Tax Principles

Our approach to tax

B. Accountability and Tax Governance

Our approach to tax

C. Tax Compliance


D. Business structure

Low-tax jurisdictions

E. Relationships with Tax Authorities and Other External Stakeholders


F. Tax Transparency and Reporting

Our tax data, Total tax contribution, Tax incentives, Advocacy, Annual Report list of subsidiaries

Corporate income tax
This is a direct tax imposed on companies’ profits. It is sometimes levied at a national level but can also be levied on a state or local basis.
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Throughout this report, “country” is used as the primary descriptor for a geographical area because that is the word used by the OECD/G20 Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) project in their proposal for country-by-country reporting (CbCR). This is one of the four minimum reporting standards to which over 100 countries have committed, covering the tax residence jurisdictions of nearly all large multinational enterprises (MNEs). In this report “country” may also refer to locations, jurisdictions or territories which have their own tax regimes or discrete rules.
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EITI stands for the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative. This is a global standard for the good governance of resources like oil and gas. EITI requires disclosure of information such as publication of data showing how much money governments receive from resource extraction.
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OECD stands for the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development which is an intergovernmental economic organisation with 38 member countries, founded in 1961 to stimulate economic progress and world trade.
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Tax borne
Tax that represents a cost to Shell and impacts upon its financial results. This includes Tax Paid (see Introduction to country-by-country reporting) as well as non-corporate taxes, such as employer social security contributions.
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The B Team
The B Team is a not-for-profit initiative aimed at ensuring that business becomes a driving force for social, environmental and economic benefit. Shell is a founding member of The B Team Responsible Tax Working Group but is not a member of the overall B Team initiative. Through The B Team, Shell and other companies have been able to give a voice to the companies’ views in the debate on fair taxation. The B Team Responsible Tax Principles, which Shell has helped to develop, reflect the views of leading companies and civil-society organisations on a responsible approach to tax.
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