Photo of John Hemming

John Hemming (Birmingham, Yardley, Liberal Democrat)

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what the Government's latest estimate is of when the UK will become a net importer of oil.

Photo of Malcolm Wicks

Malcolm Wicks (Minister for energy, Department of Trade and Industry; Croydon North, Labour)

In 2005 the UK became a net importer of crude oil (including Natural Gas Liquids (NGLs) and feedstocks), on an annual volume basis, for the first time since 1992. However, net exports of refined oil products meant that the UK remained a net exporter of overall oil (crude, NGLs, feedstocks, and refined products). Details are given in tables 3.1 and 3.2 of the June 2006 version of UK Energy Trends available at http://www.dti.gov.uk/energy/statistics/publications/trends/index.html.

With the large Buzzard Field due on-stream in late 2006, the UK should return to being a net exporter of crude oil (including NGLs and feedstocks) by 2007 before becoming a net importer on a sustained annual basis by 2010.

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