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Press Release17th Mar 1998

Continued uncertainty in the North Sea

Commenting upon the Chancellor of the Exchequers Budget Statement with regard to the North Sea Taxation Regime, James May, Director-General of UKOOA said:

We regret the continuing uncertainty for the oil and gas industry, and the impact that this will have on business confidence and the prospects for investment and employment. However, we welcome the Chancellors strong commitment to fiscal stability and look forward to a constructive dialogue with the Government in the continuing consultation on the North Sea fiscal regime.

We note the Chancellors comments concerning green taxes, and look forward to playing a constructive role in the developing debate. However, we believe that the prime objective of this sort of tax should be to modify polluter behaviour and lead to environmental benefit, rather than to raise additional revenue. The full implications of such proposals must be carefully assessed, or they will be likely to reduce industry activity and place jobs at risk.


UKOOAs Fiscal Committee will be considering the detailed implications of the Budget for the industry over the next few days.

UKOOA represents 37 operating companies licensed by HM Government to explore for and produce oil and gas in UK waters.

For more information, please call 020 7802 2400.