Government support for the oil and gas industry in recent years has provided the industry with a much greater opportunity to recover oil and gas form the North Sea.
Nevertheless, the shortage in skilled labour is still having an impact towards the long-term recovery of these raw materials, with the Offshore Petroleum Industry Training Organisation (OPITO) highlighting in its recent survey that employers are still finding it increasingly difficult to recruit skilled professionals.
The Oil and Gas UK Activity Survey for 2014 recently pinpointed that even though there has been high levels of investment, recovery of gas and oil from the North Sea will never reach maximum potential if investment is not made into refined recovery strategies.
According to the Survey, the level of drilling in wells is still greatly below target in order to recover the predicted 9 million barrels of oil and gas.
Although heavy investment has been thrown at the recovery of these raw materials, the rise in contractor pay rates has not mirrored this, with just a 0.85% increase in pay. The survey highlighted that the reason for the slow rise in pay rates is due to the 15.5% sharp rise in operating costs, which is forecast to reach £9.6bn in 2014.
It is apparent that the demand for skilled oil and gas contractors will continue to increase, which is good news for Umbrella and Limited company contractors'. However, if the rising cost of production is not addressed in the near future, contracts may feel the pinch in pay rates.