The Scotsman cartoon: BNP axe 300 Scots oil jobs

Illustration: Iain Green
Illustration: Iain Green
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BP HAS announced hundreds of job losses in its North Sea sector as concern grows about the plunging oil price.

The SNP and the First Minister were quick to react.

First, Fergus Ewing called on the UK government to act before George Osborne’s Budget in March.

“It is clear to me that the UK government has accepted it must act on tax. My question is why wait in respect of the supplementary [tax] charge until March?” he said.

Mr Ewing added: “I think this is the most serious jobs situation Scotland has faced in living memory.”

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Then, the First Minister said that she had announced a jobs taskforce on Wednesday to look at the issue.

She said: “It’s because there is a really serious concern that yesterday I established a jobs taskforce, to work to maintain employment levels in the North Sea, to give practical assistance to those who are faced with prospect of redundancy and to give a guarantee to every apprentice working in the oil and gas sector of continuing employment or training.”

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