Shell chief's pay doubles to 143 times average UK employee's

Mr van BeurdenImage copyright

Image caption

Mr van Beurden joined the firm in 2014

The chief executive of oil-company Shell saw his pay more than double last year to more than €20m (£17m).

Ben van Beurden’s total salary in 2017, which was approximately €9m, prompted a shareholder revolt.

The Dutch executive’s rise comes as the company increased its annual profits by almost $10bn and is largely down to long-term incentives kicking in.

Mr van Beurden’s pay is now 143 times larger than the average Shell employee in the UK.

The firm’s Remuneration Committee said the ratio was “consistent” with those in the top 30 companies listed in London.

It added that Shell believed in reward packages “that are externally competitive and internally proportionate, meaning the chief executive is the employee with the highest proportion of variable pay as he has the highest level of responsibility”.

The Anglo-Dutch giant is the most valuable company listed in Britain.

Last year, Shell announced it would link executive pay to carbon emission targets, subject to a shareholder vote in 2020.

The move came after pressure from investors, including the Church of England Pensions Board.

Mr van Beurden’s pay has long been a matter of controversy.

Many shareholders questioned why Shell executives were paid bonuses for 2017, the year in which a tanker run by a sub-contractor in Pakistan exploded, and killed more than 200 people.

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