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Industry body Oil & Gas UK has tried to put a positive spin on its own estimate that the UK offshore oil and gas sector would lose 120,000 jobs by the end of the year, with economics and intelligence manager Adam Davey saying that the number does not necessarily mean that 120,000 people are out of a job.
“One thing I would like to get across is that doesn’t mean those 120,000 people are no longer in employment. It means some of them are even doing the same job that they were doing previously, but that job is no longer focusing on the oil and gas sector,” Energy Voice quoted Davey as saying at a meeting at the SNP conference on Friday.
Back in June of this year, Oil & Gas UK issued the gloomy forecast that the persistently low crude prices would reduce to the number of jobs supported by the industry by an estimated 120,000 by the end of 2016 since their 450,000-strong-workforce peak in 2014. In 2015, the number of jobs associated with and supported by the UK offshore oil and gas industry dropped by 84,000 to around 370,000.
For next year, Davey said at today’s conference that Oil & Gas UK expects that the things would at least stop getting worse.
“It all depends on how much more efficient we can become, as an industry,” he noted.
According to Energy Voice, unemployment in Scotland’s northeast city of Aberdeen jumped by 21 percent in September 2016 compared to September last year. Aberdeen is one of the hardest hit areas as the North Sea oil and gas industry—one of the oil’s oldest producing areas, but also one of the most expensive for pumping crude—has been heavily suffering from the prolonged low oil prices.
Last month, the Scottish Government said that despite a jump in Scottish North Sea production in the 2015-16 fiscal year, the value of Scotland’s oil and gas sales plunged by 23.5 percent as sustained low prices highlight the challenges the industry is facing.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.