Northern Lights to dim as 66% of young workers set to abandon Aberdeen over oil job fears

A sign of the Aberdeen times.
A sign of the Aberdeen times.

Fears over the future of the N. Sea oil and gas industry would persuade six-in-ten of Aberdeen’s ‘next generation’ workforce to consider leaving the city according to the latest Northern Lights survey by PwC Scotland. 

Two-thirds of the city’s young adults (aged 16-35) are considering leaving it in next five years.

This group makes-up 43% of the region’s population, and more than half of them (52%) cite uncertainty in oil and gas sector as a reason for potential departure.

Given concerns over the state of the oil and gas sector, the findings reinforce the momentum to re-energise the sector and the region. This includes initiatives by organisations such as Opportunity North East (ONE), who have repeatedly stressed the importance of investment in industries beyond oil and gas, such as life sciences and tourism. 

Erika Campbell, Aberdeen lead director for People and Organisation at PwC in Scotland, said: “The next generation of the region’s workforce – the people thinking about settling down, having families and making roots – are voicing their concerns with Aberdeen and the local economy. 

“What our survey has revealed is that this is a generation who were attracted to Aberdeen for all the right reasons – a sense of community, location and the city being perceived as a place for young professionals.

“But they now they’re worrying if they have a future here or if they’ll send their children to school and university in the city. 

“A positive note to take from this though is that people are coming forward with suggestions for improvements around the city – for example, better transport, a renewed city centre and more cultural events.”

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