Editorial: Decomissioning: Pensioners & Platforms

Tim Haïdar

"As you get older, you don't get wiser. You get irritable." - Doris Lessing

And age seems to be this week’s main theme. In Norway, a 16-day long offshore oil and gas workers’ strike was brought to an end as the incumbent government invoked emergency powers to force protesters back to work in the world's second largest gas exporting nation. The belligerents’ cause de guerre? A demand for the right to retire early, at 62, with a full pension.

From retirement of workforce to retirement of workplace, yesterday the UK Treasury announced it would begin consultation to guarantee the long-term tax relief on the decommissioning of ageing infrastructure on the UK Continental Shelf.

With many installations reaching the end of their design life, the cost of mothballing offshore platforms, many of which were never meant to be withdrawn from service, is seen to be prohibitive to the development of extant North Sea prospects. Alleviation of "at least half their decommissioning costs back in tax relief", would significantly free up operators to embark on new ventures on the UKCS.

But will tax relief be enough to revive the mature arena and are companies really ready for the challenges decommissioning? Have your say here.

In Oil and Gas IQ this week, we take a look at:



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