UK faces disastrous North Sea decline

A top Aberdeen oil executive has sounded a warning in The Herald today that the North Sea oil and gas industry faces a disastrous decline if the government does not take action on the tax regime.

It’s almost as though successive governments have tried to camouflage the importance of North Sea oil and gas to the UK economy and to the country’s energy supply. Andrew Marr noted this apparent desire to downplay the significance of North Sea oil and gas in his BBC History of Modern Britain.

The industry is not asking for hand-outs, just an easing in the punitive tax regime

At the moment 75% of the UK’s prime energy needs flow from the North Sea. Managed prudently, this is forecast to rise to 80% by 2020.

In contrast to so many other industries at the moment, the plea is not for a government handout. All the North Sea oil and gas industry is asking for is an easing of the punitive tax regime that applies to this most vital of UK industries.

Anyone who is interested in ensuring that there is gas in their central heating system, light when they flick the switch and fuel for cars, trucks, buses, boats and planes would do well to urge their politicians to wake up to this ticking time bomb....

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