Wood Group and trade unions agree deal to end N. Sea pay dispute

RMT members also held protests over the Wood Group pay cut plans  at Shell HQ in London
RMT members also held protests over the Wood Group pay cut plans at Shell HQ in London

A mutually agreeable proposal has been developed by Wood Group, Unite and the RMT to resolve the workers’ dispute over pay cuts of up to 30% follow a series of 24hr and 48hr strikes over the summer.

Further action was planned but was put on hold for fresh talks.

The new proposals will now be put to members of the Unite and RMT unions next week.

The initial strike on 26 July was the first industrial action of its kind in the North Sea in nearly 30 years and was followed by a 48-hour stoppage the following week.

A spokesman for Aberdeen-based Wood Group said: “Wood Group representatives, officials from the Unite and RMT unions and shop stewards have now drawn up a mutually agreeable proposal which we consider to be in the best interests of all parties.

“The new proposal recognises the skills, flexibility and capabilities of the incumbent offshore workforce, the challenges facing the industry and demonstrates collective leadership in shaping the future of the North Sea.”

Unite regional officer John Boland said: “Throughout this dispute, our members have remained united and strong in defence of their pay and conditions, and we have always made clear that we were open to meaningful negotiations.

“As ever, we will guided by our members, but Unite and the offshore shop stewards believe that this proposal is the best that can be achieved in the current circumstances.”

Paul Goodfellow, Shell UK and Ireland Upstream vice-president, said: “Shell is pleased with this proposal and looks forward to working with Wood Group, Unite and the RMT to ensure that the North Sea remains competitive.”

The strikes involved a number of Shell oil platforms – Curlew, Brent Alpha, Brent Bravo, Brent Charlie, Nelson, Gannet and Shearwater.

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