Norway strike averted

No strike: on platforms off Norway

A potential strike on ExxonMobil-operated platforms off Norway has been averted after the Safe union finally agreed to a pay deal.

A stoppage looked likely after Norway’s Labour Court this week rejected a complaint by industry body Norwegian Oil & Gas (Norog) that Safe’s proposal to take 154 ExxonMobil workers on the Jotun, Ringhoren and Balder platforms out on strike would be illegal.

A strike on the facilities would have halted about 50,000 barrels per day of oil production.

The union had been stalling on whether to accept a wage pact agreed by the Norwegian Organisation of Managers and Executives, or Lederne union, in state arbitration talks last week as it was holding out for improved pension rights.

However, Safe leader Hilde-Marit Rysst said the union had now decided to sign off on the deal as pension issues with companies had been resolved at local level and it felt the offer on the table was the best it could realistically achieve at present.

Safe and another union, Industri Energi, are meanwhile set to engage in state-led mediation talks with Norog scheduled for 4 and 5 July in a renewed effort to resolve their differences over a pay settlement for oilfield service workers from companies such as Baker Hughes and Schlumberger.

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