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Eilidh Whiteford, MP for Banff & Buchan

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SCOTTISH OIL RESERVES HIGHER THAN PREVIOUSLY THOUGHT

Wednesday, 24 February 2010

LONDON POLITICIANS MUST WAKE UP TO IMPORTANCE OF SCOTTISH OIL FUND
Commenting on the survey by the offshore industry association, Oil and Gas UK, which finds that North Sea oil and gas reserves are higher than previously thought, SNP Westminster candidate for Banff & Buchan Eilidh Whiteford said that future revenues from oil should be invested for Scotland's future.

Dr Whiteford warned that the lessons of the 1970's, when London politicians claimed the reserves would not last long, must be remembered and makes the case for the establishment of an oil fund to secure the benefits of oil revenues for future generations even more important.

Commenting Eilidh Whiteford said:

"Scotland's oil and gas industry is the only thing keeping the London Treasury afloat - over the next six years, £50 billion worth of North Sea revenues will flow to the London exchequer.

"For Banff & Buchan alone that represents £740million over the next six years.

"The London politicians must not think it they can fool the people of Scotland again.

"This survey underlines how there is a strong economic future for Scotland's oil industry and the jobs associated with it here in the North-east.

"There is a real sense of déjà vu. We have London Labour politicians at the Scotland Office claiming that oil revenues would not help an independent Scotland despite the fact that even their own dodgy figures show Scotland in a better financial position.

"There is as much oil left in the North Sea as has been taken out of it - and much more than half of the revenues. Scotland's oil industry has a positive future. With the UK making billions in revenue from North Sea oil over the last 30 years, it is now time to ensure that future revenues are invested properly for Scotland's future.

"In the 1970's requests for an oil fund were turned down - a repetition of this failure by Labour in the 21st century would be unforgivable.

"The UK Government must see the error of its ways and enable Scotland to invest our own oil revenues for our future.

"Scotland needs more SNP MPs at Westminster to champion Scotland's interests and fight for Scotland's oil wealth to benefit local communities - not prop up the London Treasury. Only SNP MPs will fight for a fairer share of Scotland's oil revenues."

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