Latest oil & gas survey finds sharp decline in business optimism

Grant Allan, of the Fraser of Allander Institute and Department of Economics, presented the results of the 21st Oil and Gas survey to industry leaders in Aberdeen on 25 November 2014.

The latest survey found a sharp decline in optimism about current and prospects for activity in the UK continental shelf (UKCS) in 2015. Contractors’ net confidence in their current activity in the UKCS was at its lowest since 2008, undoubtedly worsened by the recent sharp drop in the oil price. As implementation of the Wood Review begins, respondents called for the Government’s top priority to be reform of the fiscal regime to encourage exploration and extraction.

Developments in the labour market

The latest survey also examined developments in the labour market – with recruitment and retention problems easing, but strong expected growth in employment over the medium term, and the first measure of vacancies in the sector – and, in the immediate aftermath of the independence referendum, gauged views on whether the referendum process had an impact on investment plans.  

Running since 2004, the Oil and Gas Survey provides a detailed snapshot and trend data for optimism and activity across operators and contractors active in this critical sector of the Scottish and UK economies. The survey is carried out by the Fraser of Allander Institute twice a year. It's run in collaboration with Aberdeen and Grampian Chamber of Commerce, and with sponsorship from law firm Bond Dickinson.

Read the results from the latest survey.