The UK Budget’s increase in taxes from 20% to 32% is likely to affect investments in North Sea assets.

The hike will lower the value of UK Continental Shelf fields, which are already suffering from the cost of dismantling old platforms, reports Bloomberg.

The increase in taxes has also postponed plans by BP and ConocoPhillips to sell off their mature assets.

Oil & Gas UK economics and commercial director Mike Tholen said that asset sales have started declining on concerns over decommissioning, and that the uncertain tax regime makes it harder to work out prices.

The UK has about $3bn of assets for sale in its waters, according to PLS Inc’s mergers and acquisitions database.

The new tax raise is expected to earn the UK Government £2bn, which it will use to fund the one-pence-per-litre cut in the price of fuel.