Salmond’s oil bonus boast has come back to haunt the SNP government

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The SNP spin doctors must have been working flat out briefing their MSPs what to say following the latest collapse in oil prices. First we had Dennis Robertson saying “Crisis? What crisis?” and claiming the oil industry is “booming”. Now we have Fergus Ewing reportedly claiming we have a bright future telling everyone there are still 22 billion barrels of oil and gas remaining in the North Sea.  

Rather than being in denial Mr Ewing should have listened to Sir Ian Wood when he said in August 2014 that in his opinion a figure between 15-16.5 billion barrels of oil and gas may be produced from the UK Continental shelf. Of course, even Sir Ian’s lower estimates depended on a much higher commercial level of oil prices than around the $30 today.

Instead of meaningful actions, all we get out of the SNP government and Scottish Enterprise are lots of warm-and-fuzzy words which are meaningless under the current dire economic circumstances (especially Aberdeen), laced with token gestures like the paltry £2.98 million earmarked for innovation support to companies.

There can be no doubt the SNP”s whopping exaggeration on oil revenues have been laid bare and when Alex Salmond declared oil was just “a bonus” he should have been referring to the UK and not Scotland.

Ian Lakin

Murtle Den Road

Milltimber, Aberdeen

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