Survey highlights infrastructure gap

Paul Boughton

The fifth Aberdeen and Grampian Chamber oil and gas surveyproduced with Deloittehighlights that specialist equipment and infrastructure such as drilling rig and survey ships are at a premium and in short supply.

Findings also indicate that planned activity by contractors is stronger in international markets than in the UK Continental Shelf (UKCS).

“The potential equipment flight that may result due to capital expenditure necessary to increase UKCS capacity must be seriously considered” warns Geoff Runciechamber chief executive. “Oil producers and contractorsemploying over 200000 in the UK and international oil sector expressed unease about resourcing their businesses with the right equipmentinfrastructure and people. This disquiet is compounded by the fiscal instability created by the UK Government’s decision to increase supplementary North Sea oil charge from 10 per cent to 20percent. Concerns about the additional tax burden are much more evident in this survey.

Conducted by the Fraser of Allander Institutethe survey also shows that business confidence continues to rise but less so than in previous surveys. The majority of producers reported increased UKCS-based explorationdevelopment and appraisal activity through the period (December 2005 – March 2006) and these rising trends are set to continue over the next 12 months.

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