Solberg saw rig who could have saved Norwegian jobs

Solberg saw rig who could have saved Norwegian jobsULSAN, South -Korea.Prime Minister Erna Solberg and Siv Solem, country manager for Statoil South Korea in front of the building of the gigariggen Aasta Hansteen at Hyundai Heavy Industries in Ulsan. Photo: Heiko Junge / NTB scanpix

Five commissions worth billions of NOK slipped out of the grasp of Norwegian shipyards in 2012. Now the work of the largest of those commissions has entered the final stage in South Korea.

Statoil decided that the world’s largest shipyard on the other side of the globe would be the right place to build the world’s largest residential platform. The comission went to Hyundai Heavy Industries in Ulsan, south in South Korea, which currently employs 58,000 people.
Prime Minister Erna Solberg and the local management of Statoil met the bosses on Saturday and had a look at what is to be the housing platform Spar, that is to be shipped to the Aasta Hansteen field when it is finished.

Sad situation
Solberg says she sees paradox in shipping a huge oil platform halfway around the globe at a time of rising unemployment along the coast of Western Norway.
– If the decision hade been made this year instead of in 2012 it might very well had been Norwegian shipyards who had got the commission. But they did not get it in 2012, because the costs at Norwegian shipyards were significantly greater than the costs of shipyards in other countries. It is sad that we are in such a situation now. Norwegian shipyards really could use such a commission now, because of all the layoffs and dismissals at Norwegian shipyards. But even here in South Korea the shipyards downsize because they don’t get enough contracts and commissions, Solberg says.
Had to sign the contract with a shipyard outside of Norway
Statoil’s country manager in South Korea, Siv Solem, says that there was no alternative in 2013 but to let a shipyard outside of Norway get the contract for 20 billion kroner.


Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today