UK Energy Minister Urges Industry To Embrace Change

Energy Minister Brian Wilson urged the U.K. oil and gas industry to embrace change to remain competitive and said the government is releasing two reports indicating the way forward. "A Strategy for the Offshore Engineering Services Sector" highlights how the offshore engineering and design sector is facing change, and "Large Company Support to SMEs" looks at the schemes used by large companies to access and encourage the development of new technology by small and medium-sized companies, Wilson said. Speaking at the opening of the two-day LOGIC/PILOT oil and gas conference in Aberdeen, Wilson said unless these issues are addressed urgently, U.K. engineering services will become 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," he said. "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."