Letter from the editor: A deal that needs to be good for all

Any major announcement from an industry which plays such an integral role in the district’s economy is often greeted with a sharp intake of breath.

What exactly does it mean? Who will it affect? Is it good news for the employees? Is it good news for the community?

For decades BP has been a lynchpin in the economy of Grangemouth and surrounding areas.

Over the last 60-plus years it has employed thousands of people and contributed millions of pounds to the economy in our area.

We were at the heart of the North Sea Oil boom when the Forties Pipeline brought the crude product to Grangemouth.

Since the heady days of the 1970s and 1980s the fortunes associated with the North Sea have changed dramatically.

But one factor remains, we need energy in even greater abundance than ever before.

This week’s news that Ineos is to purchase the Forties Pipeline System from BP has had mixed reactions.

The buyer and seller tell us it is a good deal for everyone, but then you would expect them to say that.

However, the unions, which still bear the scars of the two most recent disputes in 2008 and 2013, are not convinced it is a good move for their members.

What cannot be ignored, however, is that Ineos boss Jim Ratcliffe now owns an asset that delivers almost 40 per cent of the North Sea oil and gas.

It is a huge responsibility and one that we will be keeping a close eye on in the months 
and years to come.