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    Minister announces "way forward" for UK oil and gas industry

    News // May 24, 2002
    Speaking at the opening of the two-day LOGIC/ PILOT oil and gas conference in Aberdeen in mid-May, UK Energy Minister, Brian Wilson, announced details of two new reports indicating the way forward for the British oil and gas industry in an increasingly global market.

    The first report, A Strategy for the Offshore Engineering Services Sector, highlights the degree to which the offshore engineering and design sector is facing change - changing markets, changingtechnologies and the changing profile of the working population.

    Brian Wilson highlighted the three key challenges, which unless addressed as a matter of urgency, may result in the UK Engineering Services becoming increasingly uncompetitive in world markets.

    "The largest offshore field development opportunities are now in other regions of the world and Houston has become the predominant location from which oil companies manage projects worldwide. Suppliers must boost links with operators in Houston."

    "The industry also needs to recruit younger staff to offset the imminent loss of a number of employees soon to reach retirement age. This factor was raised by every company interviewed in this survey."

    "There is also considerable scope for greater levels of collaboration up and down the supply chain and between companies and contractors. I am delighted that PILOT and LOGIC have organised this joint conference to address this issue".

    The second report, Large Company Support to SMEs, was commissioned to develop a detailed understanding of the schemes used by large companies to access and encourage the development of new technology by small and medium-sized companies (SMEs) and to identify a sample of such schemes and best practice in this area.

    In his support of these two studies, Brian Wilson said: "The future for the UK oil and gas Engineering Services industry will depend increasingly on its ability to win business in foreign markets where the competition for contracts is already intense andis likely to remain so."

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