In the News

Business Objectives and Social Responsibility | Can A Business Make Too Much Profit Whilst Customers Suffer Financially?

Jim Riley

2nd August 2022

Rising energy costs are a huge concern for households, but a key driver in helping businesses like BP report record profits.

As the BBC reports here, BP has announced its highest quarterly profits in many years as rising oil and gas prices have enabled it to drive profit margins sky high.

As a quoted company, BP's shareholders will doubtless welcome the £6.9bn profit earned by BP between April 2022 and June 2022. That's around £75 million of profit per day.

Not surprisingly, there is increasing pressure on the UK government to impose additional "windfall taxes" on these extraordinary profits.

Meanwhile, households are braced for yet more increases in energy bills.

Is it morally ok for multinationals like BP to make such profits? They are not alone - other energy producers such as Shell and Esso reporting significant profit increases too.

Aren't these profits just the rewards that arise for taking risks in energy exploration and extraction?

Or do the likes of BP have a social responsibility to make a greater contribution back to society, perhaps by way of increased taxation on their profits

Jim Riley

Jim co-founded tutor2u alongside his twin brother Geoff! Jim is a well-known Business writer and presenter as well as being one of the UK's leading educational technology entrepreneurs.

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