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API applauds House rejection of new SEC rule

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Hydrocarbon Engineering,

The American Petroleum Institute (API) has released a statement in support of the House’s action to reject the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) rule implementing Section 1504 of the Dodd-Frank Act.

The API believes that the Act fails to strike a good balance between its intention to expand disclosure and protecting the competitiveness of US companies, which in turn harms US workers.

API Director of Tax Policy, Stephen Comstock, said: “Today’s House vote is a necessary step by Congress to establish sensible regulations that balance increasing transparency without diminishing our industry’s competitive advantage […] The SEC’s rule requires disclosure for American companies but not foreign entities, fundamentally harming American workers and shareholders.

“The rule also undermines global payment transparency efforts and is inconsistent with other major international reporting regimes, like the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) and the European Union’s disclosure rules. The oil and natural gas industry strongly supports transparency and has been a leading advocate for greater transparency for decades through the EITI.

“We look forward to continuing to work with the new Congress and administration on policies that will create jobs and help keep energy costs low for American consumers and businesses.”

The API believes that the rule repeats many of the errors that caused the court to vacate the first version of the rule in 2012. The SEC’s rule rejected a model of payment transparency proposed by API which would have required the SEC to publish an annual compilation of company payment data in a clear and user-friendly format while disclosing payments received by a citizen’s federal and local government by resource type, the location of the extractive activity, and the method of extraction.

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