TotalEnergies will pay $30 billion in taxes on production worldwide in 2022, the company announced Wednesday.
CEO of the French group Patrick Pouyanné, during a hearing at the National Assembly on the “super-profits” of oil and gas companies.
The hydrocarbon giant had paid 6 billion in taxes and production taxes in 2020 and 16 billion in 2021.
For France, TotalEnergies pays between “1.6 and 1.9 billion euros per year to the French budget” in various taxes, contributions, withholding taxes, added the executive, stating that he had nothing to hide.
The CEO of the French major said he wanted to play “transparency” as he was auditioned by deputies of the “flash mission” which focuses “on oil and gas companies and those in the shipping sector that have made exceptional profits during the crisis.
When asked about the much lower level of tax and social security contributions paid in France, the group’s boss replied that the bulk of its oil and gas production activities were located abroad.
“In France, the activities we have are not rent activities (oil and gas) but refining”, an activity in which the group “has lost money”, he stressed.
He recalled that his group paid taxes in accordance with the “principle of territoriality” which means that the same profit cannot be taxed twice.
“We make profits in most of the countries where we produce oil and gas, these taxes are deducted from the French tax base,” he said. The announcement this summer of the French major’s huge profits, which more than doubled in the second quarter to $5.7 billion thanks to the rise in oil and gas prices, reignited the debate on the taxation of these “super-profits”.
On this issue, the French government hopes to find a solution at the European level rather than at the national level.