North Sea oil blueprint ‘could generate £290bn for UK’

Deirdre Michie

Trade association Oil & Gas UK said its new blueprint for the North Sea oil and gas industry — outlining four key priorities for the next UK Government — could help generate additional revenue of more than £290 billion for the UK economy over the next 20 years.

Presented ahead of next month’s UK general election, it urges the incoming UK Government to implement the following priorities:

  • Establish a UK energy policy which realises the full benefits of the UK’s indigenous resources
  • Ensure the UK Continental Shelf (UKCS) is globally competitive for investment
  • Ensure Brexit negotiations support, develop and promote the oil and gas industry
  • Establish practical steps to protect, progress and promote operators, the supply chain and the industry workforce

Oil & Gas UK said that delivery of these priorities — aligned with an ambitious vision for offshore oil and gas industry developed by the Oil and Gas Authority with the industry — “could help generate an additional revenue of over £290 billion to the UK economy over the next 20 years.”

The Vision 2035 blueprint outlines two scenarios for the next two decades — one for UKCS production and the other for the supply chain.

It outlines the potential benefits to the UK that would come from fully capitalising on the opportunities presented by maximising activity in both areas.

Oil & Gas UK said Vision 2035 could ensure the industry is still a significant producer in 2035 and double supply chain turnover over the next two decades.

Deirdre Michie, chief executive of Oil & Gas UK, said: “Against the backdrop of a busy political environment and a difficult operating climate for the industry, we urge the next UK Government to support our sector through our four key asks.

“Our blueprint details the steps we believe our political leaders should take to help sustain our industry, which continues to help secure the UK’s energy needs and supports hundreds of thousands of jobs.

“We are now operating in a totally different climate and have made big changes to how we do business.

“Industry has significantly upped its efficiency, improved its cost base by 50% and increased its competitiveness.

“While we are still managing our way through tough times we must also look ahead.

“Vision 2035 sets out a compelling future with a £290 billion opportunity which could be unlocked for our sector if we continue to build on the good progress already made by industry and government continuing to work together.”

The blueprint is launched just ahead of the annual Oil and Gas Industry Conference – organised by Oil & Gas UK and held on June 6 in Aberdeen.