UN Secretary-General calls governments to tax oil & gas companies for excessive profits
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has called on governments to oil and gas companies for excessive oil and gas profits.
Guterres premised his call on the global energy crisis occasioned by Russia’s war in Ukraine.
The UN chief, in a speech before the international forum on Wednesday said, “It is immoral for oil and gas companies to be making record profits from this energy crisis on the backs of the poorest people and communities at a massive cost to the climate.
Guteress said the funds, which equaled $100 billion in the first quarter of this year, should rather be used to support vulnerable communities.
While calling on governments to also address the mounting climate crisis, he said, “This grotesque greed is punishing the poorest and most vulnerable people while destroying our only home.”
He also urged governments to expedite and diversify supply chains for raw materials and renewable energy technologies while eliminating bureaucratic red tape around the energy transition.
“Every country is part of this energy crisis,” he said.
Guterres noted that the consequences of the Kremlin’s war have transcended the energy crisis and exacerbated global food insecurity and crippling debt around the world, particularly in developing countries.
He said, “Many developing countries drowning in debt, without access to finance and struggling to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic could go over the brink. We are already seeing the warning signs of a wave of economic, social and political upheaval that would leave no country untouched.”
As part of moves to address the global energy and food crises, the U.N. chief announced the establishment of the Global Crisis Response Group aimed at coordinating global solutions to the triple crisis of food, energy and finance.
Recall that the first vessel carrying Ukrainian agricultural goods has departed from the Black Sea, a significant step in addressing the mounting food crisis provoked by Russia’s naval blockade of Ukrainian ports cutting across the Sea of Azov and the Black Sea.
In July, representatives from the U.N., Turkey, Russia and Ukraine had signed an agreement to reopen three Ukrainian ports.
After the deal was signed, Russia hit Odesa, Ukraine’s largest port with missiles, a development that was widely condemned by world leaders and efforts were being intensified to mitigate a mounting global food crisis.
Meanwhile, Ukraine’s Infrastructure Minister Oleksandr Kubrakov told newsmen on Monday that vessels are expected to reach Tripoli, Lebanon in two days.
According to Kubrakov 16 ships are ready to go, but only three vessels will leave the port each day for the next two weeks.
He said in the next two months, Ukraine hopes to export up to 3 million tons of grain and other agricultural goods by sea per month.
According to a report, before Russia’s invasion, Ukraine exported 5 million to 7 million tons per month.