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    Shell to move to UK


The company is also asking shareholders to vote on simplifying its shareholder structure.

by: Joseph Murphy

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Shell to move to UK

Shell has proposed moving its tax residence from the Netherlands to the UK, and also hold its board and committee meetings there as well, the Anglo-Dutch major said on November 15.

The company is also asking shareholders to vote on simplifying its shareholder structure. It currently has a dual-class A/B share structure, under which some investors are given disproportionate voting rights. Creating a single line of shares will make it easier for investors to understand the company's value, boosting Shell's competitiveness, delivering rewards through buybacks faster, and accelerating its transition strategy, the company said.

"At a time of unprecedented change for the industry, it’s even more important that we have an increased ability to accelerate the transition to a lower-carbon global energy system," Shell chair Andrew Mackenzie said in a statement. "A simpler structure will enable Shell to speed up the delivery of its Powering Progress strategy, while creating value for our shareholders, customers and wider society."

Shell has also proposed relocating its head office to the UK. The move comes as Shell faces pressure in the Netherlands to beef up its targets on reducing emissions. A Dutch court ordered the company earlier this year to commit to more ambitious targets for cutting Scope 1 and 2 emissions, and introduce a goal for Scope 3 emissions.

Shell said it would continue to be a significant employer in the Netherlands, where its projects and technology, upstream and integrated gas, and renewable energies divisions will remain located. 

'The simplification will normalise our share structure under the tax and legal jurisdictions of a single country and make us more competitive," Mackenzie said. "As a result, Shell will be better positioned to seize opportunities and play a leading role in the energy transition. Shell’s board unanimously recommends shareholders vote in favour of the proposed resolution."