Here are the top business stories making the headlines in the morning newspapers.

Lack of new entrants in North Sea

Fiscal complexity and uncertainty around tax are being blamed for a lack of new entrants into the UK offshore oil and gas sector.

Energy Voice says that, while there have been a number of mergers and acquisitions in the basin completed in the last year or so, in the main, deals have involved familiar faces.

“It is the same names that keep popping up and buying North Sea assets and companies,” says Nadine Amr, a partner in the energy transactions and projects team at Vinson & Elkins.

“It doesn’t feel like there are too many new entrants - and maybe that’s due to the complex nature of UK tax rules, and the fact that the fiscal regime has been changing and there’s a lot of uncertainty.”

Yousaf says nothing unusual in warrant timing

Scotland's First Minister has said there was nothing unusual in the timing of a warrant to search his predecessor's home.

It emerged on Tuesday that police asked for permission to search Nicola Sturgeon's house and the SNP HQ during the party's leadership contest.

The request was not granted until two weeks later - after the contest ended.

Humza Yousaf said he did not believe the Crown Office took decisions "based on election contests or politics".

The BBC says there have been suggestions that the delay avoided any damage to his campaign to succeed Ms Sturgeon as first minister and SNP leader.

Mr Yousaf, who was the preferred choice of the SNP hierarchy, narrowly defeated Kate Forbes when the leadership result was announced.

McColl would only pay £1 for Ferguson shipyard

The former owner of Ferguson shipyard would take it over again, but he would only pay £1.

Jim McColl also said the second of two overbudget CalMac ferries being built at the Port Glasgow site should have been scrapped four years ago.

He blamed a flawed concept design and interference by state-owned ferries agency CMAL for delays and extra costs.

CMAL has insisted the problems stem from "catastrophic contractor failure" during Mr McColl's time in charge.

The BBC says that, on Tuesday, the Scottish Government revealed it would be cheaper to order a new ferry elsewhere rather than complete Hull 802 at the nationalised shipyard.

BT to axe many jobs

Telecoms giant BT is to cut up to 55,000 jobs by the end of the decade as it seeks to reduce costs.

The headcount reduction is out of a current workforce of 130,000.

The BBC says the announcement was made as BT reported a 12% drop in profits.

Grain export agreement

An agreement allowing Ukraine to export millions of tonnes of grain through the Black Sea despite the ongoing conflict with Russia has been extended.

The two-month extension, negotiated by the United Nations and Turkey, was announced a day before the previous deal was due to expire.

There had been concerns that Russia could pull out of the pact.

It was first agreed last July following fears of global food shortages as a result of the war in Ukraine.

The BBC says the agreement has been renewed several times since then, despite Russia's criticism of Western sanctions against its agricultural sector.

Scottish Secretary to stand down as MP

Scottish Secretary Alister Jack has confirmed that he will stand down as an MP at the next election.

The BBC says Mr Jack insisted he would not depart earlier, even though he is expected to be offered a peerage in Boris Johnson's resignation honours list.

The Dumfries and Galloway MP said he did not want to trigger a by-election by moving to the House of Lords.

He said his government role was an "enormous privilege" and he planned to continue in it until the next election.

Filling office desks left empty

A council is hoping to fill the desks left empty by home working by turning its headquarters into a "civic hub".

The local authority in the Borders recently revealed that only about 60 of the 400 staff who were previously based at the site now use the building.

It said the cost, time and environmental benefits of a hybrid working model were significant.

It is now looking at opening up the building in Newtown St Boswells for others to use.

The future of the property has been debated for some time after it emerged how low the occupancy rate had become.

The BBC says the new model could involve NHS Borders, leisure and sport body Live Borders and Police Scotland all operating services from the building.

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