First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has hinted further support lies ahead for the North Sea oil and gas industry.
The politcian was in Aberdeen to meet with industry leaders as well as attending a meeting of the Energy Taskforce today.
The Scottish Government revealed it had awarded a funding package totaling £25million to help support the sector.
The announcements by the Scottish Government included a £12million package to help workers affected by the downturn retain or retrain skills through a Transition Training Fund.
A further £12.5million will be provided to help reduce risks associated with carrying out research and development by companies as well as £2.5million to allow firms to implement targeted support from senior industry experts.
The cash injection for the sector comes after Prime Minister David Cameron visited Aberdeen last week and announced £20million in additional funding for the oil and gas sector.
Speaking exclusively to Energy Voice she said:“We’ve identified a number of areas where we think the Scottish Government can help. Obviously, the big fiscal decisions that govern the viability of the North Sea lie at Westminster; we will argue a case for what we think is important there.
“We think the Scottish Government has got a big part to play in terms of skills and maintaining skills, in terms of supporting innovation, we are also looking further rights now at what we might be able to do to help support exploration and remove some of the barriers to exploration and the last thing would be around access to finance and companies that are perhaps experiencing cash flow difficulties.
“The announcements are really hitting two of those areas – skills, helping people in a very targeted way who are losing their jobs to retrain or reskill but also doing that in a way which helps maintain skills in the energy sector and secondly in research and development and helping support companies looking to innovate, to cut their costs that way.
“That can often be a very risky thing for a company to do to try new methods and new products so we’re trying to provide some support to take some of the risk out of that.”
For the full sit-down interview with the First Minister visit Energy Voice tomorrow.
The politician discusses the future of Aberdeen, how the Energy Taskforce has helped the industry and calls for a reduction in taxes paid by the sector.