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BBC News: Shell rejects asset sale claim

Shell has rejected an MP’s claims that uncertainty over the new SNP government could have been behind its decision to sell some of its North Sea assets.

On Thursday the company announced it was selling its assets in six mature North Sea oilfields and scrapping plans for a £25m headquarters expansion.

Aberdeen South Labour MP Ann Begg met Shell executives on Friday morning.

A spokesman for First Minister Alex Salmond said her remarks bore no relationship to reality.

Unions and politicians have raised concerns over the future of the 400 Shell staff affected.

There is also anger that the company has pulled the plug on the planned subsea centre of excellence at the existing base at Tullos.

Diversionary tactic

Labour MP Ms Begg said uncertainty over the future direction of the SNP government could have been behind the decision.

She said the administration had been constantly picking fights with the Westminster government since coming to power last month.

A Shell spokesman said the decision had nothing to do with politics.

Mr Salmond’s spokeman said the comments were an absurd diversionary tactic which would be greeted with ridicule by the industry and the people.

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