Value of oil

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Ellis Thorpe (Letters, 17 October) makes great play of what Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP government “ought” to do in the light of falling oil prices, when he must be perfectly well aware that there is absolutely nothing she can do in the light of the
fact that all control over oil 
revenues is jealously guarded by the incompetent Westminster Treasury.

It has always been SNP policy to invest oil revenues in an oil fund when prices are high, to take care of times when prices are lower, just like all normal countries would do.

(Oh, I forgot, except Iraq and the UK, the only two countries that produce oil but spend all the income immediately, without a thought for the morrow or for future generations).

Surely that was the worst 
financial scandal of our history.

Norway has no problems with fluctuating oil prices.

Its oil fund of almost US $1 trillion will take care of all possible price changes for a hundred years or more.

Poor old Scotland, on the other hand, is the only country in the world to discover massive, nation-changing amounts of oil, and end up poorer.

James A Duncan

Rattray Grove

Edinburgh

Ellis Thorpe is right to point out that the sharp fall in the oil price will have severe economic consequences.

The oil price has fallen from $115 only four months ago to $84 a barrel yesterday, a decline of 27 per cent.

Such volatility confirms the honesty of the No campaign warnings that we should treat the over-optimistic oil revenue forecasts of the Yes campaign with some circumspection.

Such declines reduce the viability of many North Sea fields and will lead to a sharp decline in tax revenues which were going to be vital to the social and welfare promises offered by the SNP to an independent Scotland.

Alan Black

Camus Avenue

Edinburgh