The Government remain committed to supporting the industry and building on the £2.3 billion package announced in recent Budgets. My right hon. Friend the Minister for Energy and Clean Growth greatly enjoyed her recent visit to Aberdeen—as did I, when I visited—when the industry presented its initial proposals for a deal. My right hon. Friend is meeting the sector deal champion, Trevor Garlick, tomorrow.
I thank my hon. Friend for that answer. The oil and gas industry based in the north-east of Scotland has contributed over £330 billion to the economy, supports over 330,000 jobs across the United Kingdom and has a supply chain worth nearly £30 billion. With an estimated 20 million barrels of oil still to get out of the North sea, the industry has huge potential to drive this country’s growth, but of course there is still uncertainty, so I know that the Minister will welcome the response—
The UK Government have so far failed to announce a sector deal for oil and gas, and there was no mention of one in their industrial strategy. There is a need for a sector deal approach to the industry. The Scottish Government have been calling for such action. Will the Minister finally rectify this glaring omission and commit that vital support for the industry and the jobs and investment it relies on?