Shell wants to splash out 125bn dollars on shareholders

Oil and gas giant Royal Dutch Shell has revealed plans to hand over 125 billion dollars (£98 billion) to shareholders over five years.

Bosses said they want to hand out the cash between the beginning of 2021 and end of 2025 as they revealed the company has cashed in 30 billion dollars (£23.6 billion) from selling non-core businesses.

Shell is also expected to complete a 25 billion dollar (£19.7 billion) share buyback by the end of next year.

Chief executive Ben van Beurden said: “We have reshaped our company with a focus on value and have demonstrated a clear track record of delivering on our ambitious promises made at our management day in November 2017.”

Over the next five years, the company said it also wants to grow “market-facing” businesses in its upstream division, which drills for oil and gas, investing around 30 billion dollars a year. It will focus on deep water drilling and shale gas in particular.

The company said: “Natural gas and liquefied natural gas are expected to continue to experience strong demand as the world tackles climate change, poor air quality and population growth.”

Shell also wants to continue to grow its power business to take advantage of the increase in electricity usage, with the rise of electric cars.

The Anglo-Dutch company has already bought household energy firm First Utility and rebranded it Shell Energy.

Mr van Beurden added: “All this adds up to a forward-looking strategy that ensures Shell is well-placed to continue to deliver a world-class investment case and thrive in the energy transition.”