§ 10. Mr. Greville Janner
asked the Secretary of State for Energy when he anticipates the United Kingdom will be an exporter of oil.
§ Mr. Gray
The United Kingdom has exported some oil for a number of years, but for the last few months production has exceeded consumption so that we have become a net exporter. For some time ahead, production and consumption will be finely balanced with monthly production, except perhaps during the winter, exceeding consumption.
§ Mr. Janner
Can the Minister assure the House and the country that if the Straits of Hormuz are blocked we shall still have enough oil available for this country's needs?
§ Mr. Gordon Wilson
Does the Minister not realise that, in addition to worry over the export of oil, it is feared that there will be loss of opportunities caused by the export of petrochemicals? Will he give an assurance that one of the intentions of his Department will be to secure petrochemical production in Scotland and that, if necessary, he will be prepared to consider giving a rebate on royalties or reducing petroleum revenue tax, to allow cheaper feedstock to be made available to encourage petrochemical companies to establish or expand in Scotland?