Skilled labour shortage in world oil industry: report

A new report published by and Air Energi, finds that the shortage of skilled labor in the oil and gas industry worldwide, coupled with expanding demand, presents a significant workforce challenge and jeopardizes safety standards in the industry.


The highest concern for those surveyed for the Global Oil & Gas Workforce Survey: Expectations for hires and pay rates in the oil and gas industry (H1) 2013, is economic instability. However, nearly one-third of respondents identified skills shortages as the biggest threat to the sector.

In Canada, the report says, project activity is busy, but cooler than anticipated. The year 2014 had been expected to be a “peak” year, but this has not materialized. Instead, there is uncertainty around Canada’s overstretched pipeline capacity, making operators wonder whether to increase production or maintain current levels. Alberta, the report says, is “scrambling” to get product to market, as well as attempting to identify what those markets are. While the large, well-financed players continue their activity in Canada, there is a problem of demand for Canadian crude, which, if it is not solved, will lead to smaller developers being left behind.

Overall, hiring activity in Canada is happening at a “measured” pace, with reduced demand for electrical and piping engineers. In North America in general, rates and lavour supply are “reasonably stable,” though the report notes that offshore and LNG expertise are in short supply the world over, which could be a problem in Canada if “hoped-for” LNG projects go ahead on the west coast.

In the United States, 2013 is expected to be a big year for operators with the rapid development of shale gas and shale oil plays. Canada and Alaska are also ramping up significantly as the development of Arctic reserves becomes a reality.


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