Commenting on the Scottish Government’s Independence White Paper – which pledges no tax rises on oil and gas operations in the North Sea – Aberdeen University Professor John Paterson said an ‘independent Scottish Government offers greater fiscal stability to the North Sea Oil industry than Westminster control. ‘
Prof Paterson, who co-authored a report on energy in an independent Scotland for the respected David Hume Institute in Edinburgh, said:
“Post referendum, if we had an independent Scotland, all the signals that the Scottish Government is currently sending, are very much to address the concerns of the [oil and gas] industry about fiscal stability.
“The Scottish Government in its publications has very much addressed [this concern] by saying [it has] no plans to change the fiscal regime but any future change would very much be on the basis of consultation.”
He also pointed out that in 2011 the UK government increased the rate of the supplementary charge “without any warning whatsoever” causing concern in the industry.
Dennis Robertson, SNP MSP for Aberdeenshire West, said: “These comments from Professor Paterson make crystal clear just how much damage the Westminster government did with their shock tax raid on the sector in 2011 – and highlight the gains of independence for the offshore industry and all those who work in it.”