The First Minister has been accused of producing a “fantasy report” to suggest a new oil boom.
Alex Salmond was attacked by Tory leader Ruth Davidson during First Minister’s Questions in Holyrood yesterday over the publication of a Scottish Government analytical bulletin on oil revenues this week.
The bulletin predicts oil tax revenue could be as high as £11.8 billion by 2017-18, almost three times greater than Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) estimates.
The SNP administration refused to publish its sums because it is “not in a position to make them publicly available”, she said.
“So in other words, we made these projections up and we’re not telling you how,” Ms Davidson said.
Mr Salmond replied: “She claims we put forward an ambitious estimate for oil prices. That is simply not the case. We have assumed a declining real-term oil price over the term of the forecast.”
Projections from the industry itself offer a “better, more reliable guide” than OBR estimates, he said.