Bright future for oil & gas sector

The bright future ahead of the oil & gas sector has been highlighted today as the CEO of Oil & Gas UK made clear that he personally expects North Sea reserves to be higher than current estimates of 24 billion barrels.

During a conference at the University of Aberdeen on the politics of the oil & gas sector, CEO of Oil & Gas UK Malcolm Webb made clear his personal view that the estimated 24 billion Barrels of Oil Equivalent (BOE) remaining in the waters off Scotland’s coast is an “underestimate”.

Mr Webb also confirmed the critical role that the oil & gas sector plays in the UK’s balance of payments and made clear that he does not believe that the reliance of an independent Scotland on oil & gas revenues would be “overwhelming”.

Commenting, SNP MSP Mark McDonald said:

“These measured and sensible comments from one of the key figures in the oil & gas sector could scarcely contrast more with the hyperbolic negativity towards the industry that has become the hallmark of the No campaign.

“The oil and gas industry clearly shares Malcolm Webb’s confidence in the future of the North Sea, with the sector investing a record £13 billion this year alone in improving production.

“With some £1.5 trillion in wholesale revenues remaining in these waters - and potentially much higher depending on oil prices - it is essential that Scotland gains the opportunity to use these resources to the benefit of people living here.

“With the powers of an independent Scotland we can use these resources to build a more prosperous Scotland, rather than squander the revenues to prop up the failures of Westminster Chancellors.

“Only a Yes vote in September 2014 will give us that opportunity to ensure that the benefits of the sector are felt in Scotland for generations to come.”

A summary of the University of Aberdeen event which confirms Malcolm Webb’s view that 24 billion barrels is an underestimate of remaining reserves can be viewed at