Employer’s association quashes oil workers’ pension demands
As the Oil Industry Association (OLF) calls union pension calls unacceptable, Norwegian Continental Shelf (NCS) personnel are readying for a strike.
Both parties are obligated to meet at the state mediator’s office, Friday. The OLF and unions Industri Energi (Industry Energy), SAFE (Norwegian Union of Energy Workers), and Lederne (Norwegian Organisation of Managers and Executives) will come face to face to see if they can reach a new collective agreement for those working offshore for oil companies.
This demand from Industry Energy, the Norwegian Union of Energy Workers and the Norwegian Organisation of Managers and Executives clearly shows that they’re placing themselves apart from all other private sector unions.Earlier negotiations broke down quickly because unions’ main requirement is early retirement. The OLF flatly rejected this. Employers now warn they will be rejecting it once more.
“Pensions are not and never will be part of the central pay talks,” says the OLF’s Jan Hodneland, director of employee policy.
“This demand from Industry Energy, the Norwegian Union of Energy Workers and the Norwegian Organisation of Managers and Executives clearly shows that they’re placing themselves apart from all other private sector unions,” he adds.
Prepares for full lockout
Around 700 offshore workers could be called out on strike in the first round if mediation does not succeed. In turn, the OLF has made preparations for full lockout of about 6,000 employees on the NCS.
Meanwhile, he rejects that the OLF has knowledge or which sums both he and the others in negotiating process are demanding on behalf of their members.
“They [the OLF] have not been interested in discussing this with us so far, so that they can’t know. We’re not actually interested in distancing ourselves from the community otherwise. We’ll be keeping within what the industry vulnerable to competition has set,” declares Mr Stamnes, maintaining the pension demand stands.
A short-term dry up in orders is insufficient argument to trim staff numbers, lawyers say.
* Two drilling rigs suspended due to overcapacity, company says. * Move applies to Saipem's Scarabeo5 and COSLPioneer.