Oil services giant National Oilwell Varco (NOV) is cutting dozens of jobs in Montrose, in what has been described as a “massive blow” for the area.
It is understood the group is consulting over shedding 67 jobs from a total workforce of around 140.
The multinational firm told shocked Montrose staff at its Merpro site on Monday.
The group’s aftermarket rigs division, based nearby, is not affected.
The group’s communications department in Texas failed to respond to requests for information.
Merpro was bought over by NOV in 2011 — before the downturn in global oil prices — and provides machining, design, fabrication and technical services.
North Angus and Mearns MSP Mairi Evans said job losses would be a “massive blow” to the area.
“When a big employer like this lets so many staff go it undoubtedly has a big impact on the local economy, but what is important now is trying to ensure that those highly skilled staff are not lost.
“I know that the economic development team at Angus Council are seeking to work with those staff affected, Skills Development Scotland and the PACE team to help staff find work or other opportunities and this has to be the priority.”
North East MSP Bill Bowman, the Scottish Conservative spokesman for jobs, employability and training, said: “There had been some indications recently that we were starting to see the end to job cuts in the oil and gas industry as most of the larger firms had already made adjustments to reflect the lower oil price.
“However, if as many as 67 posts are under threat at the Merpro site, that will come a serious blow to the local community.”
Departing local councillor David May said: “A figure of 67 out of the existing workforce is a very high proportion and it is extremely disappointing to hear that oil-related companies in the area are still struggling and having to make people redundant.
“It may be very difficult for those affected to find employment in the area given that there have been a number of jobs lost during the downturn in the industry.”