TotalEnergies will have to pay more than two billion euros as part of the solidarity contribution on the profits of energy groups in 2022. Within the scope of the European Union and the United Kingdom, “we exceed two billion new taxes in Europe in the context of the energy crisis”, announced the CEO of TotalEnergies, Patrick Pouyanné, in an interview published this weekend in the French-speaking Belgian daily L’Echo and Dutch-speaking De Tijd.
In October, the group had already estimated “at one billion euros the impact of the European solidarity tax” in 2022, specifying that this European solidarity tax would be due in six EU countries: France, Germany, Belgium, Luxembourg, mainly on its refining activities, as well as in the Netherlands and Denmark for exploration and production activities. “Refining lost money for years, and now the year we start making money, it’s overtaxed as superprofit, when it’s just profit,” lamented the leader.
However, the French giant will not dispute this contribution at European level. On the other hand, he will draw “the consequences”: “In the United Kingdom, we will invest less”, he summarized. Patrick Pouyanné also clarified that his group would pay “33 billion dollars” in taxes and duties worldwide in 2022. “We are in the 10 largest contributors in the world,” he said.
The debate on the “superprofits” of oil and gas companies risks resurfacing when their annual results are published. TotalEnergies has already announced a new record profit in the third quarter, of 6.6 billion dollars and will not escape it: “I understand that there is a societal, collective, complicated subject there. And I understand, as you say, that it’s annoying, ”says Pouyanné.
The European Commission had indicated at the end of September that it wanted to claim a “temporary solidarity contribution” from the producers and distributors of gas, coal and oil who are making massive profits thanks to the surge in prices following the war in Ukraine. It must be set at 33% of the share of the superprofits of 2022, i.e. profits more than 20% higher than the average for the years 2019-21, while taking into account the measures taken by the States taxing these benefits already. France has transposed it into its 2023 budget.
The Commission took care not to use the word “tax” because any new tax provision at European level would have required the unanimity of the Twenty-Seven, a more complicated and risky procedure than adoption by qualified majority.