Strike threat looms, as well services pay talks start in Norway
- Business & Finance
A mediation process starts Wednesday between the Norwegian Oil and Gas Association and the Norwegian Union of Energy Workers (Safe) over the well service pay agreement. The deadline expires at midnight.
“Many of the supplies companies are experiencing very demanding times because of the reduction in activity,” observes Jan Hodneland, lead negotiator for Norwegian Oil and Gas. “Their earnings have declined substantially as a result of both new and renegotiated contracts.”
“This means that a growth in costs would add to their burden. It would worsen the position not only for the companies but also for their employees, who have seen many of their colleagues being made redundant.”
According to the Norwegian Oil and Gas Association, the position of the suppliers is not comparable to that of the operator companies, who reached agreement over the offshore settlement last Saturday. They have been through a major restructuring over the past couple of years, with big cost cuts and extensive downsizing.
“A prudent pay settlement would make a significant contribution to improving the competitive terms for Norway’s supplies companies,” says Hodneland. “It will help to preserve the largest number of jobs, which needs the contribution of both sides.”
Safe has notified a that all 663 of its members would go on strike on Wednesday 00:00, if the mediation with Norwegian Oil Industry Association (NOG) in well service talks does not end with an agreement. The 663 workers are emoloyed in the following companies in the following companies: Baker Hughes AS (79), Halliburton AS (35), Oceaneering AS (17), Schlumberger Norge AS (228), Subsea 7 AS (78), Vetco Gray Scandinavia AS (184) and Weatherford Norge AS (42).
According to the employers’ representative, a possible strike would mean a halt to or delays with various services, such as cementing of wells, exploration drilling and well completion. However, it would have no immediate consequences for production on the Norwegian continental shelf (NCS).
Norwegian Oil and Gas negotiated with the Norwegian Union of Industry and Energy Workers (Industry Energy) over the oil service agreement (OSA) on Tuesday. These talks are temporarily put on pause.