The Energy industry has taken another battering. But unlike previous economic hurricanes, this time within weeks centrally funded support was made available in the form of furlough leave and pay.
The UK Government’s furlough scheme is unlikely to “stem the tide” of oil industry job losses as employers are told to start contributing to wages in the coming months, lawyers and politicians said.
The Chancellor is set to tell employers they will need to contribute to their furloughed workers' salaries from August as the Government admitted the scheme cannot run "indefinitely".
A union boss has claimed a “host” of North Sea contracting firms are poised to lay off furloughed workers as the cost of maintaining the scheme mounts.
Offshore workers have said they’ve been “dumped” by a major recruitment firm after it decided not to offer the UK furlough scheme due to holiday pay concerns.
The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (the "Scheme") was announced on 20 March 2020 and opened to applications on 20 April 2020. By 23 April 2020 it had received 512,000 claims in respect of 3.8 million furloughed employees. However, a great deal of uncertainty remains around the application of the Scheme to businesses in the oil and gas sector.
The furlough scheme is certainly helpful to energy sector employers and employees but there are some grey areas which mean businesses and individuals may not benefit as was intended.
Since the introduction of the job retention scheme on 20 March 2020 we have all had to rely on government guidance as to how the scheme will operate.
Worley has been branded a “disgrace” by union bosses after terminating workers without furlough at a Shetland oil and gas terminal.
Around 80 jobs have been saved at Altrad Services after union pressure saw the firm reinstate workers under the government’s furlough scheme.
Oilfield services giant Halliburton will “significantly reduce” its workforce in the coming weeks, according to chief executive Jeff Miller.
Bilfinger UK has said it will offer the option for the government’s coronavirus furlough scheme, days after terminating onshore workers without support.