Oil giant Shell revealed yesterday that up to 250 jobs are to go in Scotland – most of them in Aberdeen.
The posts are being lost in a major worldwide restructuring of the oil giant.
The jobs, which are mostly management and non-operational, are in Shell’s upstream international business north of the border.
A spokeswoman in Aberdeen said it was already known that 180 of the posts were going, as they were included in cuts revealed in April, 2008.
The Scottish losses announced yesterday will mainly impact the Granite City, but St Fergus and Mossmorran will also be affected.
Shell confirmed yesterday that about 5,000 out of 50,000 posts will go worldwide in the divisions affected by the restructuring.
Fifteen thousand employees are having to reapply for 10,000 roles.
Half the posts to go will be spread between the Netherlands, the US and the UK.
Shell currently has more than 2,000 people working from Aberdeen.
One city worker, who asked not to be named, said: “My application is now in and it is just a case of waiting to see what happens.
“I had heard we should get news by the start of December. Obviously everyone is apprehensive.”
Shell, which employs 100,000 people in its worldwide operations, said in July it had already cut around 150 top management positions.
As recently as February this year, the company said it was not planning any further job cuts among its Aberdeen workforce.
That denial came after it emerged the company had intensified cost-cutting efforts in response to the fall in oil prices.
The company warned yesterday that it would be a long haul to recovery after reporting a 73% slide in profits between July and September.
Shell’s third-quarter earnings fell to £1.83billion as a result of weaker oil prices and the ailing global economy.
Chief executive Peter Voser said there were indications that energy demand and pricing were picking up, but said the outlook remained uncertain and that his company had ruled out a quick recovery in the trading conditions.
Yesterday’s figures were better than market expectations, but the upside was far short of the margin by which BP results exceeded City hopes on Tuesday.
Investors reacted with disappointment to Shell’s update, with the company’s shares falling.
Richard Hunter, head of UK equities at Hargreaves Lansdown Stockbrokers, said the preferred company within the sector remained BP.
He added: “In comparative terms, Shell was always going to have a mountain to climb following BP’s stellar performance earlier in the week. Unfortunately, these numbers leave it some way short of the summit.
“The outlook is decidedly cautious, while rival BP has a head start in terms of streamlining the business, with the associated cost savings.”