More than 7,000 jobs have been lost in the oil industry this year and many more are set to go this year and next, it was announced on Thursday.
The Norwegian government run Statoil believe this is only the beginning.
Already this year the oil giant has announced between 1,600 and 1,900 job positions will have to go. All together the number of job cuts between 2013 and 2014 in the oil sector comes up to between 6,575 and 7,060, according to statistics from DNB Markets.
Director of Norsk Industri (Norwegian Industry), Knut E. Sunde, believes the real number of job cuts is probably even bigger because there are a lot of smaller companies within the oil industry that do not inform the sector about their employment cuts.
Sunde said: “I also believe this is only the beginning, since downsizing processes tend to take a long time.”
He also pointed at the steep fall of oil prices this summer already resulting in organizational changes that will lead to more job losses.
Employer's union rep at Statoil, Bjørn Asle Teige, said that both his own employer and other off-shore oil companies plan more job cuts which will take effect in 2015.
“A wave of job cuts may soon come from the oil rig companies. Just look at the number of oil rigs stopping their operations off-shore,” said Teige.
Meanwhie Statoil announced on Thursday it is to suspend operations upon two new oil rigs until the end of this year because of overcapacity and a sector that is currently dominated by high costs and low profit.
Statoil infomed the two oil rigs - "Transocean Spitsbergen" and "Songa Trym" - will be suspended until the end of this year, if not longer.
The company has tried to find other project for the oil rigs without succeeding, according to NTB.