What can be done

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James A Duncan (Letters, 18 October) is right that, with regard to oil prices and revenues, “there is absolutely nothing” Nicola Sturgeon can do.

However, this isn’t because political authority over oil prices and, therefore, revenues lies with the United Kingdom.

Rather it’s because oil is a strategic resource traded on world markets, subject to wider political influence. Take for example the Rhum field in the North Sea, jointly owned by BP and Iran’s national oil company.

Four years ago it was shut down when Iran fell foul of western sanctions. Now it is to reopen.

What has dramatically changed are global and regional politics, especially relations between Iran and the US.

Is there any point in giving Norway as an example of what “ought” to be done politically? (Unless Mr Duncan is urging Ms Sturgeon to say North Sea oil ought to be nationalised.)

Arguably yet again he will find what “ought” to be done means what “can” be done.

Ellis Thorpe

Old Chapel Walk

Inverurie, Aberdeenshire

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