Solstad Crews Latest to Lose Jobs

offshore crew
file picture: offshore crew transfer

Published May 24, 2015 8:17 PM by Wendy Laursen

Norway-based Solstad Offshore has announced that it is cutting back its OSV fleet and associated staff.

The anchor handlers  Normand Jarl and Normand Skarven are being sold and PSVs Normand Skipper and Normand Vester will go into lay-up. As a result 50 offshore employees will be made redundant.

Norway has enjoyed low unemployment rates for many years, but it reached 4.1 percent recently partly as the result of jobs disappearing in the oil and gas sector. State statistics bureau SSB reported that 112,000 Norwegians were unemployed in February, and the numbers are expected to grow as more companies in the offshore sector cut costs.

There have been staff layoffs elsewhere across the upstream oil and gas market as a result of low oil prices. Houston-based McDermott International cut about 1,675 jobs at its fabrication yards in May. The move is expected to result in a cash savings of $27.6 million.

Elsewhere Denmark's A.P. Moller-Maersk will cut 200 jobs in its Maersk Oil unit over the next two years. The cuts will fall in Maersk's headquarters, Qatar and UK business locations and will affect both permanent Maersk Oil employees and core contractors.

Shell is planning further job cuts in its UK North Sea oil and gas business in 2015, the company said in March, just a week after a package of tax cuts from the Treasury aimed at encouraging growth in the industry.

"Shell UK plans to reduce the number of staff and agency contractors who support the company's UK North Sea operations by at least 250 in 2015," Shell said in an emailed statement.

The reduction is in addition to 250 job losses announced in August, Shell said, and follows North Sea job cuts by BP, Talisman Sinopec, Chevron, and ConocoPhillips.