Scottish Energy Minister Fergus Ewing attended a ground breaking ceremony for The Core – a new £4 million oil and gas testing facility for Sonomatic in Aberdeen today.
Sonomatic provides automated non-destructive ultrasonic inspection and related integrity services for the oil and gas, power generation and defence sectors.
The visit coincided with the publication of a refreshed oil and gas strategy by the Industry Leadership Group co-chaired by Ewing. This offers a new plan for long term industry growth, focusing on developing the industry supply chain and on targeting international markets.
Tracy Anderson, Sonomatic UK Business Development Manager and RAIS (Rope Access Inspection Services) Division Manager, explained:
“With the oil prices at a record low and so many companies within the industry battling to keep their doors open, global leader in non-destructive testing, Sonomatic, is doing everything it takes to turn a negative today into a positive tomorrow.
“The location for our new facility in Bridge of Don, Aberdeen, has been very carefully selected with emphasis given to the client’s logistical requirements. Sonomatic recognises that during high turnaround shutdown seasons, every mile travelled counts and adds to the time the client/asset is kept waiting for the return of their equipment.
“Our direct investment envisaged at this stage is to be in excess of £4 million, including the land, building and fit-out costs. In terms of employment, provided by the overall investment, Sonomatic will first of all maintain 50 jobs within the construction industry to build our new base.
“Thereafter, in the short term we are likely to create around 15 full time jobs, with a long term view of creating anything from 20 to 70 full time jobs, depending on the success of our initiatives and successful bids via our Rope Access Division.
“The new state of the art premises will house radiography and hydro testing bays and have the ability to perform heat-treatment on client’s equipment. The RAIS division will also offer a mobile NDT service to all onshore clients, including UT, MPI, liquid penetrant, radiography and heat-treatment.”
Fergus Ewing said: “While it is clear that the oil and gas industry faces severe challenges from a low global oil price, today’s investment from Sonomatic underlines the many opportunities which remain through our world class supply chain and I look forward to seeing this exciting project develop.
“Earlier today, the oil and gas industry leadership group – of which I am co-chair – published a refreshed oil and gas strategy offering a shared path for industry, governments and the Oil and Gas Authority to follow in working together to support the industry and its world class supply chain.
“With 22 billion barrels of oil and gas remaining, the sector can still have a strong future – and I am pleased to be here in Aberdeen’s The Core today to get work underway on this very welcome, and necessary, project.”