BP has announced their third quarter profits. The company made £6.4bn ($10.5bn) between July and September, a 148% gain over the same period last year. This amount was not surprising after the price spike in July skyrocketed barrels of oil to over $147. This caused the British government to start commenting on the fact that oil companies are still reaping the benefits of high gas prices even though the price of crude oil has dipped into the $60 a barrel range. "BP have absolutely no excuse for not passing on any fuel price falls to customers. It would be a scandal if they do not." Shadow Chancellor George Osborne said.
The British Prime Minister Gordon Brown called upon BP and other oil giants to pass along the price drops to motorists. "There has been more than a halving in the price of oil and, just as when the price goes up people see it immediately reflected in the petrol pump prices, we want to see the falling price reflected in the petrol pump prices, and we are determined to see that happens," the British Prime Minister added.
BP chief executive Tony Hayward admitted the company’s profits have been boosted by the cost of fuel: "Although it has since fallen away sharply, the high oil price of the third quarter obviously helped our absolute result." BP was also quick to point out that over the past three years it had paid more than £5bn ($8.2bn) in tax to the UK. Then when fuel, excise duty and VAT were added, the total rose to almost £21bn ($34.75bn).