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Prime minister hints at more help for beleaguered oil and gas industry after plight of the east coast industry raised

13:07 27 January 2016

Oil and Gas platform

Oil and Gas platform

Anna Henly,Shell International Ltd except external advertising

Prime Minister David Cameron has pledged to build a bridge to the future for those involved it the oil and gas industry.

Waveney MP Peter Aldous, who was the first up in the weekly House of Commons question time, said there were “serious challenges” in the North Sea, urging Mr Cameron to assure him that he recognised the seriousness of the situation

He called for more to be done if the industry was to “first survive and then thrive”.

The prime minister highlighted that the oil price decline had been the longest in 20 years, and nearly the steepest, acknowledging that the effects could be seen in the east.

He said he was set to head to the oil hub of Aberdeen in Scotland tomorrow after the issue had been discussed with his cabinet.
“I am determined we build a bridge to the future for all those involved in the North Sea,” he said.

He also indicated that he would be “saying more” tomorrow about what help could be given to the industry.

Mr Aldous said earlier this month that the oil and gas industry was fighting for its very existence on the UK continental shelf.

The chairman of the all-party group on offshore oil and gas in Westminster told MPs the supplementary charge and the petroleum revenue tax should be reduced further or abolished, with more funding made available for seismic surveys provided.

Last year’s budget saw the petroleum revenue tax (PRT) cut from 50pc to 35pc to support continued production in older fields, with the existing supplementary charge for oil companies also be cut from 30pc to 20pc.

About 75,000 jobs have gone in the industry in the past 15 months as a result of the dramatic collapse in oil prices.

4 comments

  • Ingo, good post, very good, as usual....................The industry will need support for a lot of years, if the predictions about global growth are correct. All that taxpayers' money, to continue to destroy our environment, our very lives.................... 75,000 skilled workers - why isn't it possible put these subsidies into their employment, in the green energy sector? Is it because the wealthiest lobbyists wield the most influence.................something we could ponder re: the fracking industry? Surely not!

    Report this comment

    catharthis

    Thursday, January 28, 2016

  • The most expensive wells to abstract fossil fuels from will have to shut first and alternative means to create energy are becoming more established in future. Globalised economies who have exported their dirty manufacturing to China, Mexico and other external countries are in the grip of old fashioned polluting interests. We don't want to modernise and the vested interests that Cameron wants to waste taxes on are all very able to look after their own affairs. This is another banking scandal in the making. Face up to it, Saudi will not stop producing oil, whatever Cameron says to them and we have no influence on Iran, as yet we only managed to destabilise Libya Iraq and Syria, all oil producers with reserves. The pricing of oil, the taxes on energies, which are still sky high, the need to press ahead with alternatives, all of it has been on the back burner, ignored, the Tory's have killed off solar , for them it was always a subsidy wheeze for large landowners to cover their fields with, only. Not a single penny of tax should be used to keep polluting industries alive when their vital signs all point to a steady demise.

    Report this comment

    ingo wagenknecht

    Thursday, January 28, 2016

  • Oil and gas as with any other commodities are subject to market forces. Prices have for many years been kept artificially high by parties with vested interests. North Sea oil and gas is very expensive to locate, extract and process. Whilst oil was trading at over 100 Dollars a barrel this was feasible and profitable. With huge over production worldwide, collapsing demand because of slow down in economic growth , massive increases in cheap gas fracking operations prices have fallen to around 30 Dollars a barrel. If these trends continue the price could fall even lower further jeopardising ongoing investment and North Sea operations. The loss of 75,000 jobs over the last 15 months is a massive blow to the industry and the exchequer . We are seeing similar situations in other areas such as the steel industry which are also linked to World commodity prices etc.

    Report this comment

    Grey Fox

    Wednesday, January 27, 2016

  • Levels of tax are not necessarily the problem - lack of capital investment tax relief is.

    Report this comment

    Rob44

    Wednesday, January 27, 2016

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