Two economic development bodies will join forces in the crusade to anchor the oil and gas supply chain in the north-east.
Opportunity North East (One) and Scottish Enterprise will help smaller suppliers take advantage of opportunities in offshore decommissioning. They will also show oil service companies how they can diversify into new market segments, including wave and tidal energy.
The first decommissioning opportunity relates to seabed debris clearance. Small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) will be given a chance to demonstrate how they can lower the cost of debris removal while maintaining safety and environmental standards. Companies have until 5pm on May 9 to apply. Successful applicants will later pitch their ideas to operators ConocoPhillips and Shell.
Meanwhile, a workshop on wave and tidal power generation will be held in Aberdeen on May 16. It will be the first in a series of events intended to match oil and gas companies with commercial openings in other markets. Future workshops will look at offshore wind, nuclear decommissioning, water and waste water, and the wider utilities market.
Trevor Garlick, chairman of One’s oil, gas and energy sector board, said: “Anchoring oil and gas supply chain SMEs long term is a key part of strengthening and diversifying the economy. These businesses provide high-skill, high-value employment and capturing a share of decommissioning work and market diversification offers them significant medium to long-term growth potential and a further route to internationalisation.”