Norway: Oil workers’ wages talks break down
Following two days of negotiations on revised agreements for land-based employees in Norway’s oil industry, the talks ended late on Tuesday night.
They had been conducted with the Industry Energy union on the industry agreement, and with the Norwegian Union of Energy Workers (Safe), Parat and Negotia on the oil agreement.
Industry Energy refused to accept the final offer from Norwegian Oil and Gas and opted to break off talks, while the other three requested time out to consider the terms offered.
Both deals under discussion are framework agreements, which means that pay rises are negotiated by the various companies concerned at local level.
Fourth to mediation
This is the fourth set of negotiations on pay and conditions involving Norwegian Oil and Gas this year, and the fourth to go to mediation through the National Mediator.
“It is very regrettable that yet another agreement on pay and conditions will have to go to mediation,” says Jan Hodneland, chief negotiator at Norwegian Oil and Gas.
“Union expectations ahead of this year’s talks have clearly been very different from the views taken by employers,” says Hodneland.
“We want to ensure that agreements on pay and conditions are economically responsible today as well as sustainable in the future. So we can’t allow employees in the oil and gas industry to get bigger rises than other sectors have received.”
Some 5 000 employees are covered by the agreement, working for such companies as BP, ConocoPhillips, ENI, Esso, Det Norske Oljeselskap, Lundin, AS Norske Shell, Statoil ASA, Total E&P Norge, Wintershall, Gassco, Teekay Shipping and KCA Deutag Drilling Norge AS.