Norway: Offshore oil workers’ strike averted as pay deal struck

A possible strike that had threatened to cut the Norwegian oil production by more than 400.000 barrels a day has been averted as the Norwegian Oil and Gas Association and the Norwegian Organisation of Managers and Executives (Lederne) have struck a pay deal.

The Gjøa platform in the North Sea. Image by Martin Lindland/Equinor
The Gjøa platform in the North Sea. Image by Martin Lindland/Equinor

According to the Norwegian Oil and Gas Association, an agreement was reached through mediation early on June 4. The mediation had started on Monday morning following a recent decision by Lederne to break off negotiations with the with Norwegian Oil and Gas, employer’s association for oil and supplier companies, over the offshore agreement on pay and conditions.

Commenting on the successful outcome of the mediation, Jan Hodneland, the lead negotiator on behalf of the employers said: “These talks have been very demanding. But agreement was eventually reached on a financial framework which corresponds with the offer made in the pay talks during May and which has already been awarded to the Norwegian Union of Industry and Energy Workers and the Norwegian Union of Energy Workers (Safe).”

The Norwegian Oil and Gas Association said that all the unions received the following offer on May 8: a general raise of NOK 19 700 (~$2,270), an increase of NOK 3 in rates for the shift/night/conference supplements, and an increase of NOK 50 in the supplement for public holidays. This offer corresponds with the 3.2 per cent framework set by the agreement with the lead sectors earlier this year.

It was also agreed that discussions will be pursued by the parties up to September 30, 2019 on aspects of the way the intermediate pay negotiations function, local pay talks and committee work related to future new forms of collaboration and operation, the Norwegian Oil and Gas Association said.

As previously reported, Lederne has about 1 000 members of the 7 500 unionized workers covered by the offshore agreements. Prior to the deal being struck, Lederne had issued an official notice that 198 personnel would down tools on the following installations Gjøa (Neptune Energy): 75 members; Ekofisk 2/4 K and 2/4 B (ConocoPhillips): 28 members; Kristin (Equinor): 24 members; Draugen (Okea): 23 members; Ivar Aasen (Aker BP): 17 members; Oseberg East (Equinor): 16 members; Gudrun (Equinor): 15 members.

Had the strike happened this would have caused the shutdown of Gjøa, Kristin, Draugen, Ivar Aasen, Oseberg East, and Gudrun offshore platforms, leading to a also cease off production from associated fields such as Tyrihans, Maria and Vega, too. This would’ve meant a daily production loss of roughly 440 000 barrels of oil equivalent.

Offshore Energy Today Staff

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