HC Deb 06 November 1973 vol 863 cc110-1W
Mr. Michael Roberts

asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what action she proposes to take to implement those recommendations in the Report on Education and Training for Offshore Development which are addressed to her Department.

Mrs. Thatcher

The Government's general acceptance of this report was announced by my hon. Friend the Minister of State, Department of Employment, on 5th November.—[Vol. 863, c. 57–8.]

I accept the recommendation that, to meet the increased demand for petroleum engineers, provision of appropriate post-graduate and post-experience courses should be concentrated in one or two centres in the United Kingdom. I have sought the advice of the University Grants Committee and understand that it is discussing this recommendation in the first place with Imperial College, London, and the University of Aberdeen.

Imperial College is offering an under-graduate course in petroleum engineering for the first time in this academic year, supplementing a long-standing post-graduate course in the same subject. Aberdeen University proposes to establish a new chair with special emphasis on petroleum geology and technology. The University Grants Committee accepts that it is important to involve the offshore industry in discussion of the content of courses designed to meet its needs at the centres.

The University Grants Committee has accepted the report in principle and has agreed to send copies to universities drawing their attention to passages in the report relevant to them.

I am also drawing the report to the attention of the research councils involved and am inviting them to take account of the needs of the industry when they allocate their resources for post graduate student awards.

The further education service also has an interest in, and a potential contribution to make to, several of the report's recommendations, including the establishment of a centre in drilling technology and a study of education and training for rig and platform design and construction.

1969–70 1970–71 1971–72 1972–73 1973–74
Sold to other nations (other than as scrap) 3* 3 1
Sold for scrap (including sale to foreign nations) 19 27 21 16 1
* Includes one sold for commercial use.

In addition eight ships have been sold in the United Kingdom in this period for commercial use. There are no ships awaiting decision as to their future.

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