The oil and gas sector is a hugely important industry for Scotland, and our universities and colleges provide world-class education and training in Scotland and internationally. We recently provided £1.7 million through our energy skills Scotland funding to support the establishment of the oil and gas academy of Scotland, which is a collaboration—initially between Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen College, the University of Aberdeen and Banff and Buchan College—to share resources and facilities to ensure that maximum provision is available to the oil and gas industry.
I am aware of the concerns that have been raised by the principals of the University of Aberdeen, Robert Gordon University and Aberdeen College about the impact of the United Kingdom Government’s student migration policy on those institutions’ ability to recruit international students to their oil and gas courses. The principals wrote to me on the matter on 30 April. I share their strong concerns and, once again, I am taking them up with the Minister of State for Immigration.