A few days ago our local MP Caroline Lucas wrote a question which was answered by Greg Hands who is one of the Ministers for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS). The question was regarding the “discussions his Department has had with energy companies on .. windfall tax” and the answer was specifically focused on the meetings that Ministers have held. Now of course this is not an adequate answer for what a Department deals with as many people work in the Departments and a significant amount of external meetings will have taken place in the Department before the Ministers would get involved. However what was equally fascinating was the list of meetings that are published which involve the BEIS Ministers. The most recent list of meetings took place on the website was from October 2021 to December 2021 so clearly there is a need for the January to March 2022 list to appear soon. However there were a total of 514 meetings of which 66 involved Greg Hands and several of them seemed to focus on “discussion of Offshore Wind Industry Council” and yet Greg Hands did not refer to those meetings that he has taken place within. One wonders how MPs can obtain more information than the very basic list of meetings which do not include the non Ministers in their department and which do not easily explain what took place in the Ministerial meetings.
Caroline Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what discussions his Department has had with energy companies on whether Government policy on a windfall tax is linked to levels of investment in the North Sea; and if he will place a copy of the meeting notes in the Library.
Greg Hand: This Department holds many meetings with companies to discuss a wide range of business issues. Details of meetings held by Ministers in the Department are recorded in our transparency data, which is published at:
Taxation is a matter for HM Treasury.