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UK oil and gas annual industry review

Published by
Oilfield Technology,

The annual review from is based on research with more than 10 000 North Sea oil and gas workers.

The review reveals that 69% of workers have confidence in the future of the industry, with analysis from the annual review showing that demand for jobs in the industry is set to rise with 20 000 jobs being created throughout 2014.

The review also reveals that the majority of workers are confident that tax breaks will continue to boost investment in the industry. This comes on the back of EnQuest’s announcement that it would develop the Kraken heavy oil field thanks to a government tax break ensuring the company will pay no tax on revenues until 2018. Kraken is expected to produce as much as 30 000 boepd when it comes on stream in 2016/2017.

The review also shows that 68% of oil and gas workers saw a rise in their salary during 2013. The figures reveal that 29% of workers received a 5% pay rise, while 27% said they received a pay rise four times the rate of inflation, while 29% received a pay rise between 20% and 30%. These figures now confirm that the average wage for the industry has risen from £73 600 to £80 960 during the last 12 months.

The professions in the industry that saw the highest pay increases included drilling workers on offshore platforms, engineers and health and safety workers, the majority seeing pay increases between 6 and 10%.

The review found that most oil and workers believe wages will continue to increase throughout 2014 with 83% of respondents expecting another 5% to 10% rise this year in wages, up to four times the level of inflation.

Yet 61% of respondents believe that the skills shortage and wage increase is still being caused by competition overseas. The review found that most competition for workers is coming from the Middle East, plus newly emerging oil and gas fields in Africa.

“Oil and Gas People’s annual review shows that demands for jobs and wages in the industry is up again. Increased investment in North Sea oil, combined with new technologies for recovering oil, means that oil fields have longer lives today,” said Kevin Forbes, CEO of

“Yet the competition from overseas is putting pressure on wages as demand is beginning to outstrip supply for qualified oil and gas workers,” he continued.

“Many UK candidates are heading abroad to earn high wages with a huge demand for qualified expats globally. The only way the North Sea oil and gas industry can keep them in the UK is to raise wages even higher or invest more in creating a new generation of highly skilled oil and gas workers” said Kevin Forbes.

Adapted from a press release by David Bizley

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