Woodside to Cut 300 Jobs, Freeze Pay to Battle Oil-Price Drop


MELBOURNE, March 24 (Reuters) - Woodside Petroleum Ltd , Australia's biggest oil and gas producer, said on Tuesday it would axe about 300 jobs this year and freeze all salaries as it continues to slash costs to cope with a sharp slump in oil prices.

"Woodside has completed a business review to address the impact of the downturn in the commodities market. The outcome is that about 300 roles will be made redundant," Woodside said in an emailed statement on Tuesday.

The company had flagged in February that it was considering further job cuts and Chief Executive Peter Coleman said then that the cuts in 2015 would probably be around the same as the 320 jobs it slashed last year.

The West Australian newspaper first reported the latest job losses, citing a memo from Coleman to staff.

Energy companies have been scrambling to cut costs as oil prices have roughly halved over the past year, with shale oil production in the United States stoking a global glut at the same time that demand growth has slowed in China.

(Reporting by Sonali Paul; Editing by Tom Hogue)


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