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Another oil service firm may cut jobs

Another oil service  firm may cut jobs
International oil service company Baker Hughes INTEQ is expected to make an announcement today on possible job losses.

International oil service company Baker Hughes INTEQ is expected to make an announcement today on possible job losses.

It was claimed yesterday that 95 posts could go out of the 341 UK-based payroll – nearly all of whom are based in the Aberdeen area.

A Sunday newspaper said staff were understood to have been given the bad news at a meeting at the Portlethen offices of the company.

No one at Baker Hughes INTEQ could be contacted for comment yesterday.

It emerged last week that the world’s largest oilfield service provider, Schlumberger, might cut employee numbers in the north-east.

A British spokeswoman for the company said that, in the current challenging economic climate, it was looking at the most effective ways of managing its resources in the UK and throughout its operations worldwide.

She added, however, that it was too early to say if jobs would go in the Aberdeen area, where it employs more than 2,000 people.

Schlumberger is to shed 5% of its North American workforce, or 1,000 jobs, and is looking at reductions elsewhere. It has more than 84,000 workers in about 80 countries, with around 4,000 of them in the UK.

Despite the worldwide economic slowdown and a dramatic drop in energy prices since the middle of 2008, few job losses have been announced to date by firms in the oil and gas business.

Last Wednesday, Ernst and Young (E&Y) was appointed as administrator for oil and gas company Oilexco North Sea (ONS). The news leaves a questionmark over the future of about 100 staff in Aberdeen and offshore.

However, E&Y said it intended to continue with existing operations, with a view to finding a buyer.

Colin Dempster, one of the joint administrators, has already been approached by several interested parties with a view to purchasing the whole or part of the company’s business and assets.

Rivals BG Group, Talisman Energy, Petro-Canada and Maersk Oil have all been linked in the media with possible bids.

Canadian parent Oilexco – which is not subject to the administration – had announced on Hogmanay that its subsidiary intended to file petitions for administration “as soon as reasonably practicable”.

The group said it had run out of options for ONS after bankers refused to provide further funding.

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