Oil, Energy and Airports: Where are the Main Parties Getting Donations From?

Theresa May

From a Middle Eastern oil magnate to Heathrow and Gatwick, the three main parties have seen a mix of donations come in since Brexit last summer.

The Conservative Party has received significantly more money from individuals and companies in the fossil fuel industry compared to the Labour Party and the Lib Dems, according to the latest data on the electoral register analysed by DeSmog UK.

This news comes after the Conservatives’ election manifesto pledges a unique commitment to increase support for the oil and gas industry should they win in June.

Scattered throughout the donations to the various parties are some clean energy companies, utilities, and airports as well.

So, in the lead up to the 2017 general election, we take a look at those donations which give insight into the different parties’ relationships with polluting industries.

Conservative Party

Since Theresa May became prime minster the Conservative Party has received over £670,000 in donations from oil bosses, energy companies and one of the two London airports vying for the chance to build a new runway.

Alexander Temerko, a Ukrainian-born business man and former deputy chairman of the Russian Yukos Oil Copmany, is a long-standing supporter of the Conservative Party and Brexit campaign donor. Since last July, Temerko – who is now the director of oil engineering giant OGN Group – has given £63,800 to the Conservatives.

Ayman Asfari is the chief executive of Petrofac, a British multinational oil and gas services provider. (Asfari was recently interviewed by the Serious Fraud Office over suspected corruption.) In December Asfari donated 40,000 to the Tories. And this month both him and his wife, Sawsan, gave another £50,000 each bringing the total donated to £140,000 since December 2016.

Amjad Bseisu is the Palestinian-born chief executive of UK-based oil and gas development and production company EnQuest. Bseisu has donated £45,500 since last September with an additional £6,230 donated in the form of a sponsorship and auction prizes.

Abdul-Majid Jafar is the chief executive of Crescent Petroleum, described as “the oldest and largest private upstream oil and gas company in the Middle East”. In December Jafar gave a single donation of £28,000 to the Tories.

Ian Taylor is the president and chief executive of Vitol, a Swiss oil trading company. Last year Vitol was fined for payments made to an Iraqi state-owned firm. Taylor donated a total £97,000 to the Tories since Brexit.

Matthew Ferrey, former senior partner of Vitol, has donated a total £124,000 since last November. His latest, and largest, donation was this month to the tune of £100,000. Ferrey is also the founder of Rainworth Capital, which invests in the manufacturing of sensors for oil drilling.

Ravi Kailas is the chairman of Mytrah Energy, an Indian renewable energy (mostly wind power) developer and producer. Since September Kailas has given the Conservatives a total £9,400.

Alasdair Locke is the former chairman of the Scottish oil services company Abbot Group. Last July Locke donated £20,000. This was followed by another £100,000 donated this March.

In December, the Tories received a £8,400 donation from E.on, a European electric utility service provider. The Conservatives also received £14,316 from Moltex, a UK-based nuclear energy company last October. Finally, last September Gatwick Airport gave the Tories £18,000.

Labour Party

In comparison to the Conservative Party, Labour has received a total £15,000 from energy-related companies and one airport.

Last September, £8,400 was donated to the party by Scottish Power. Then in October, Labour received £3,000 from Utilitywise, a UK-based energy consultancy company. This was followed by a £3,600 donation from Heathrow Airport.

Lib Dems

A total £60,000 has been donated to the Lib Dems from individuals or companies in the energy sector.

Last December, Mark Petterson donated £20,000 to the Lib Dems. Petterson, a former BP employee and has worked in the oil and gas sector for more than three decades. He is now the director of Warwick Energy, a large wind farm developer. This past March Petterson donated another £20,000 to the Lib Dems.

Also last December, the party received a £20,000 donation from Ecotricity, a Goucestershire-based green energy company.

Sources for all donations listed can be found here.

Spot something we missed? Leave a comment below or email us.

Correction: The amount that has been donated to Labour was mistakenly written as £150,000. This has been corrected to £15,000 as shown in the table at the end.

Photo: Number 10 via Flickr | CC 2.0

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