SNP Energy spokesperson Callum McCaig, MP (Aberdeen South) has written to the UK Chancellor urging his full support for the oil and gas industry as the British government increasingly ‘abandons responsibility’ and is ‘quietly ignoring‘ the oil and gas sector.
This follows the comments from his Tory colleague-the Chief Secretary to the Treasury – who revealed the industry is likely to be ignored in the UK Government’s autumn statement.
Callum McCaig has continued to push for desperately needed exploration incentives from the UK government through changes in tax to encourage companies to invest in the North Sea and retain jobs in the sector.
He said: “It is utterly astonishing that the UK Treasury would shun this sector with this attitude barely weeks after a report from Oil and Gas UK set out clearly that support is still needed and more has to be done to encourage exploration so this industry can continue to recover.
“Companies have had a task of improving efficiency and reducing costs, which we know has resulted in high numbers of job losses and morale in this sector taking a real hit. There is the opportunity to give this sector a real boost and kick-start exploration by securing Government support of it, but instead we have heard a complete abandoning of responsibility to this industry.
“The industry continues to suffer despite the removal of Petroleum Revenue Tax (PRT) and the reduction of the supplementary charge to 10 per cent. Your predecessor (George Osborne) missed the opportunity in his final budget not only to completely remove the supplementary charge, but also to introduce much needed exploration incentives.
“On November 23, Chancellor Phillip Hammond will deliver his Autumn Statement – I sincerely hope he takes some time over the next seven weeks to implemented the changes I am calling for, and the industry itself has been crying out for, rather than quietly ignoring this vital industry.’’
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