The UK Treasury has unveiled a set of reforms to help boost oil and gas exploration in the North Sea.
It includes introducing a basin-wide “investment allowance” designed to cut the tax rate for companies investing in the future of the UK Continental Shelf.
It is estimated there could be up to 21 billion barrels of oil equivalent offshore.
The Government has also committed to supporting seismic surveys in under-explored areas of the North Sea.
The measures are part of a package announced by Chancellor George Osborne yesterday, which included an immediate tax cut from 32% to 30%.
Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander said: “We’re incentivising and working with the industry to develop new investment opportunities and support new areas of exploration. This will help ensure that the industry continues to thrive and contribute to the economy.”
An extra £6 million of funding was also announced for the Oil and Gas Authority.