Wilson opens showcase for UK oil and gas exploration expertiseNews // November 8, 2002
The centre aims to bring more multi-million contracts and jobs throughout the UK, building on recent success stories for North East fabrication yards, like Bonga and Clair.
Over two thousand jobs were recently created when UK contractors won bids to construct offshore facilities for Shell's Bonga field, off Nigeria, and BP's Clair field, in the North Sea.
The new joint Government-industry sponsored 'shop-window' for the oil and gas sector serves a dual purpose: acting as a permanent trade mission to sell UK offshore expertise to British and international clients; linking up with schools and colleges to attract young recruits to the energy sector.
Brian Wilson said: "It is a credit to Tyneside that it has been chosen to showcase UK fabrication technology. The Offshore Centre not only provides an essential 'shop-window' to showcase UK expertise but also offers unique opportunities to bring both UKand overseas customers into this vibrant business environment. The Offshore Energy Centre is a superb advertisement for British innovation and skills in the energy sector."
"It is vital that the UK keeps hold of this tradition by encouraging young people into a sector where the average workforce age currently stands at 50. The Offshore Energy Centre is right to target early links with schools and colleges in the local area,and across the country, in order to maintain its richly deserved first class reputation."
The Offshore Energy Centre is located in the AMEC yard in Wallsend, Tyneside, where the multi million pound contracts to build the topsides for BP's Clair platform, west of Shetland, and Shell's Bonga Floating Production Storage and Offloading Vessel, off Nigeria, were recently won.