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Strike stops production in the North Sea

A strike by 700 employees in the Norwegian oil industry has stopped production on several fields in the North Sea. The strike is estimated to cost the industrry and the state NOK 150 milllion a day.

Negotiations between the industry and the Organisation of Energy Personnel (SAFE), Industri Energi and the Norwegian Organisation of Managers and Executives (Lederne)  broke down in the early hours of Sunday 24 June.

Statoil has announced that it must shut down production on the Heidrun platform in the Norwegian Sea and the Oseberg Field Centre in the North Sea.

As a result of the strike on the Oseberg Field Centre production at both Oseberg South and Oseberg East will also have to be shut down.

“Given the extent of the strike on the Oseberg Field Centre and the Heidrun platform, it will neither be practical nor justifiable from a safety perspective to maintain production. We are left therefore with no other option than to shut down production at the hardest hit installations,” says Øystein Michelsen, executive vice president for Development & Production Norway.

The onshore plant at Tjeldbergodden in Nordmøre obtains its gas from the Heidrun platform and will have to close within one to two days. Sections of the plant at the Sture terminal in Hordaland will also be closed, and the Mongstad plant in Hordaland will be affected. This may disrupt deliveries to customers.

Lost revenue resulting from the production stoppage will amount to more than NOK 100 million per day.

“If the strike turns out to be a long one, reserves might also be lost,” says Michelsen.

As a result of the strike some 300 employees of Statoil and its suppliers will also have to be brought back onshore from the Field Centre. Personnel on Oseberg South and Oseberg East will be assigned tasks on board until further notice.
The value of the deferred production as a result of the shut-down at Oseberg is estimated at approx. NOK 75 million per day.

SAFE Industri Energi have also called ESS employees on the Floatel Superior out on strike. Superior is currently located at Oseberg South in connection with the installation of Stjerne. The floatel will be shut down as a result of the strike in ESS, and some 330 people, mainly supplier employees, must be transported ashore.

The value of the deferred production as a result of the shut-down at Heidrun is estimated at roughly 40 million per day. Some 180 Statoil and supplier employees must be transported ashore from Heidrun.

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