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‘The subsea oil and gas sector is now one of the fastest growing sectors o ...

‘The subsea oil and gas sector is now one of the fastest growing sectors of the UK economy,’ said David Pridden, Subsea UK Chief Executive, when he recently unveiled a new study of the sector. ‘To meet global demand, the UK subsea sector immediately needs 1,000 people and the number of new jobs that will be created by the sector in the next five years is anticipated to be 3,000.’ Subsea UK commissioned global management consultant Arthur D Little last year to conduct a comprehensive review of the subsea market. Today’s findings are an update of this review to measure the change in market activity from 2004 to 2005. This latest study reveals that the UK’s oil and gas subsea sector is now worth £3.35bn - compared to last year’s findings when the UK market was valued at £2.7bn. This implies a market growth rate of some 23.6%, a growth rate substantially higher than the 5% to 10% earlier predicted. The study also showed that costs of service provision are rising sharply due to the unmet demand for engineers and the lack of suitably qualified professionals and the increasing costs of raw materials such as stainless steel, alloys, copper and plastics. Pridden stated: ‘Extracting the remaining world’s reserves will increasingly fall to the subsea industry - already almost 40% of UKCS oil production comes from subsea wells.’ |He continued: ‘The UK sector can only grow at the same rate as demand for its services and technology if key stakeholders such as government, education and financial institutions understand and support it. We face two fundamental challenges - those of people and technology. The global prize can only be won if we meet the demand for suitably qualified professionals and engineers and become faster at commercialising new technology. To do this we must create a global centre of subsea excellence in the UK focusing on developing new skills and new technologies. The industry and government must work together to achieve this before the window of opportunity closes.’

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