Norwegian Oil Industry Settles Trade Union Agreement

The Norwegian Oil Industry Association has reached an agreement with the trade unions Industry Energy, the Federation of Oil Workers' Trade Unions and the Norwegian Organization for Managers and Supervisors concerning the Shelf Agreements and the Oil Service Agreement. Consequently, there was no need to go to arbitration as planned with Lederne this week and the risk of labor disputes over this year's settlement within OLF's agreement areas is now over.

"After negotiations with the unions this week we have reached an agreement on wage increases offshore. The unions had high demands and different priorities in the decentralized settlements conducted in May. Their demands were much more extensive than indicated by the guidelines that followed from the coordinated wage settlement between the Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise (NHO) and the Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions (LO)/the Confederation of Vocational Unions (YS) earlier this year. We have reached an agreement which is somewhat higher than the result of the coordinated settlement," says negotiation leader Jan Hodneland.

"The shelf agreement settlement will give an increase of 6.1 percent from 1 April 2008. In addition, lagging pay gains will be given of NOK 8000 as of 1 July. The shift/night allowance has increased by NOK 4 per hour, whereas the conference time allowance has increased by NOK 8 per hour," Hodneland says.

This year's settlement solution gives an annual average of between NOK 31,000 and 36,000 for the various tariff areas (operator, drilling and catering).

In the Oil Service Agreement with the IE a general increase of 5 percent was given as of June 1, 2008. In addition, changes have been made to the wage matrix through the introduction of a new grade for the A and B groups as of January 2009, and one more grade for group A in January 2010. Consequently, the maximum salary in group A and B will increase by NOK 30,000 and 15,000 per year, respectively.

Furthermore, the shift/night allowance in the Oil Service Agreement increased by NOK 4, whereas the public holiday allowance increased by NOK 100.

Both the IE and SAFE were bound by the NHO-LO/YS coordinated settlement, as the settlement had already been approved by LO and YS by referendum. Lederne conducted an ordinary tariff revision in the decentralized settlements, as they were not part of the coordinated settlement.

The settlement comprised the shelf agreements for the operating companies, drilling and catering, which are parallel agreements with the three respective unions, as well as the Oil Service Agreement with the IE.

The agreement for offshore employees is valid for two years and remains in force until the next tariff revision in 2010.