Petroleum Industry Claims Cutting Its Tax Breaks is “Discriminatory”

Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Jack Gerard
According to the oil industry’s top lobbying group, President Barack Obama’s corporate tax reform plan is discriminating against petroleum producers.
Apparently with a straight face, Jack Gerard, the president and CEO of the American Petroleum Institute, told reporters that oil companies don’t receive any subsidies, which makes closing off certain tax loopholes completely unfair towards these businesses.
The truth of the matter is petroleum corporations currently enjoy numerous subsidies and tax breaks that total about $7 billion a year. For example, oil and gas companies are allowed to get tax credits for royalties they pay to foreign governments. Brian Siu, a policy analyst for the Natural Resources Defense Council, told Roll Call that one subsidy, allowing companies to deduct intangible drilling costs, has been available to the industry since 1916.
Under Obama’s proposed reforms, the income tax on corporations would drop from 35% to 28%. But about $4 billion in loopholes would also disappear.
-Noel Brinkerhoff, David Wallechinsky
To Learn More:
Senate Retains $2 Billion in Annual Tax Breaks for Big 5 Oil Companies (by Noel Brinkerhoff and David Wallechinsky, AllGov)
Big Oil’s Misbegotten Tax Gusher (by Seth Hanlon, Center for American Progress)

Oil and Gas Industry Gears Up to Help Friendly Candidates (by Noel Brinkerhoff, AllGov) 


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