Oil revenues

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That oil revenues are dropping faster (your report, 18 July) is not a new finding at all.

The continuing reduction in income over 30 years has been well flagged for more than two years, and acknowledged by 
finance secretary John Swinney.

We now find a Holyrood “spokeswoman” saying it’s not revenues which reflect oil and gas sector activities, but investment.

That is a fair comment, but how many jobs and how much material do Scottish firms 
supply, as opposed to overseas 
enterprises doing their own thing?

Then follows the boringly much repeated assertion that there is a potential wholesale value of one and a half thousand thousand million pounds 
remaining in the North Sea.

No definition of exactly what this means to revenues which will have to keep us all going.

The oil left is reckoned to be costly to extract, and mostly overseas companies (again!) will no doubt be to the fore if they judge it profitable – selling the crude on to whomever will pay.

We just get licence fees and taxes per barrel, minus exemptions for decommissioning etc, so revenues cannot realistically be other than a small percentage of the “wholesale value”.

Our economic situation after separation would most certainly be immediately enhanced with all the oil income, but inevitably we will continue in deficit and 
increasingly so after 2018.

We need to know exactly what is proposed to halt the decline –not just get another general assertion that it will be covered. Does throwing out Trident do it?

Joe Darby