Petrofac staff strike over pay dispute

Petrofac

Around 146 workers at Petrofac-owned Repsol assets at several North Sea oil and gas installations have begun strike action today (16 November) over pay.

The deck crew, platers, pipe fitters, electricians and riggers, who are based at the Flotta terminal in Orkney and the Fulmar platform, will take part in a 48-hour stoppage today and tomorrow, as well as a continuous overtime ban. A further 48-hour strike has been planned for 30 November and 1 December.

According to trade union Unite, which represents the workers, the dispute is about the removal of a 10% equal time payment, an additional 3% increase on top to cover years of below inflationary increases, payment for OEUK medicals, increase in mileage payments and stand-in duties payment.

In 2020, the offshore contractor implemented a salary cut worth up to £7,000 due to the downturn in oil and gas prices and stated that it would review this in the future. The Unite members have demanded that this is reversed, along with implementing pay increases that reflect inflationary costs and other payments to be reviewed by the employer.

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A Petrofac spokesperson said: “We continue to work closely with our teams and our client to ensure there is no increased risk to safety during periods of industrial action. Through regular reviews of the remuneration of our offshore workforce, we ensure fair compensation aligned with the market. Our latest review resulted in enhancements including a salary increase and commitment to an additional increase in January 2023, an equal time allowance and increased additional and training day payments.”

Sharon Graham, Unite’s general secretary, added: “Unite’s members working at Petrofac’s Repsol assets are furious at the way the [organisation is] treating them. On the promise of a review of the pay and benefits back in 2020, workers sacrificed wages and benefits and now the business is reneging on that commitment.”