Norway oil strike ends after wage agreement
By Nerijus Adomaitis OSLO (Reuters) - Norwegian oil firms struck a wage bargain with labour union officials on Friday, ending a strike that had threatened to cut the country's oil and gas output by close to 25% next week, negotiators for each side told Reuters. Brent oil prices fell by more than 1% on the news to $42.74. Six offshore fields shut on Monday and a further seven had been scheduled to follow in the coming days, with the oil and gas outage set to grow to 966,000 barrels of oil equivalent (boed) by Oct
By Nerijus Adomaitis
OSLO (Reuters) - Norwegian oil firms struck a wage bargain with labour union officials on Friday, ending a strike that had threatened to cut the country's oil and gas output by close to 25% next week, negotiators for each side told Reuters.
Brent oil prices fell by more than 1% on the news to $42.74.
Six offshore fields shut on Monday and a further seven had been scheduled to follow in the coming days, with the oil and gas outage set to grow to 966,000 barrels of oil equivalent (boed) by Oct. 14, the industry had said. [L8N2GZ15Q]
"We have a deal, there will be no (more) strike (action)," negotiator Jan Hodneland of the Norwegian Oil and Gas Association (NOG) said after the talks ended.
The Lederne trade union confirmed the news.
"The strike is over," union chief Audun Ingvartsen said.
Oil firms and union officials met on Friday with a state-appointed mediator to try to end the 10-day strike in western Europe's biggest oil and gas producing nation.
Friday's meeting was the first with the state mediator since the strike was announced on Sept. 30, although informal talks had been taking place.
Crucially, the union said its new bargain for offshore workers included provisions for land-based workers at the onshore control rooms of Aker BP
The settlement also included a commitment from oil firms to sign a broader, long-term agreement later, the union said.
Wages will also increase, according to Lederne, although this was in line with what other workers in the industry had obtained, the union said.
The NOG was not immediately comment on the agreement.
The strike's first production outage began on Oct. 5, amounting to 330,000 boed, with an additional shutdowns due this weekend at six fields operated by Equinor
Equinor's Johan Sverdrup oilfield, the North Sea's largest with an output capacity of up to 470,000 barrels per day, had been scheduled to close on Oct. 14 as a result of the strike.
Norwegian oil workers are among the highest paid in Europe but earn less than those in Australia or North America, a review of the latest available data shows.
(Additional reporting by Nora Buli, writing by Gwladys Fouche and Terje Solsvik; editing by Susan Fenton and Kirsten Donovan)
This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.
By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States
BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.