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    Norwegian pay dispute ends in agreement: press


The action would have impacted some 10 offshore production platforms, including Johan Sverdrup P2, Njord A and Valhall.

by: Callum Cyrus

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Natural Gas & LNG News, News By Country

Norwegian pay dispute ends in agreement: press

Norway's offshore sector has averted a strike action with three trade union bodies after reaching a provisional wage deal, Reuters reported June 12.

Around 845 offshore workers, or 11% of the workforce, were due to strike yesterday if annual pay talks floundered, the Norwegian Oil and Gas Association said June 10. The pay deal was brokered by the National Mediator of Norway. 

Had the strike action gone ahead, Norway would have faced disruption to a 10 offshore production platforms: Johan Sverdrup P2, Njord A, Valhall, Gudrun, Oseberg East, Oseberg South, Oseberg C, Oseberg B, Ringhorne, Kvitebjorn.

Around 50% of Norway's workforce belong to a trade union, giving labourers a strong bargaining hand.  The pay settlement for the oil and gas sector is subject to talks each year. On this occasion, employees had demanded above-inflation pay increases, Reuters said. Norwegian Oil and Gas argued this went beyond industry pay norms across Norwegian industries.

At just 2% of daily production, the ten platforms accounted for a relatively low share of Norway's overall hydrocarbon output last year. Union officials say the strike would avoid major gas disruptions, given tighter energy markets throughout Europe. Gudrun produced 45,700 barrels of oil equivalent/day, while Oseberg East yielded 5,600 boe/d and Oseberg South 32,000 boe/d, Reuters said.

The trade unions concerned are Industri Energi, Safe and Lederne. Industri Energi has finalised the pay compromise, while Safe and Lederne will seek subsequent approval from their members.

"Safe has come to the conclusion that we will ask our members before we either sign or go on strike," said Hilde-Marit Rysst, leader of Safe union.