HC Deb 03 February 1981 vol 998 cc74-5W
Mr. Gordon Wilson

asked the Secretary of State for Energy what is his projection of the offshore oil platform market in 1981; and what variations in employment levels he expects.

Mr. Gray

Two developments—Beryl B and Hutton—have been approved by the Department and we expect orders, for a fixed steel platform and a tension leg platform respectively, to be placed this year. The Department is currently considering a revised plan for the extension of a field, and several other projects—both for oil and for gas fields—are approaching the stage of submission to the Department. The nature of the industrial opportunities which will arise from these projects is varied; for example steel jackets, small jackets for shallower water, floating production facilities. A range of contractors, including platform and module yards and shipyards, will be interested. It is not possible for that reason, and also for the considerable problems of timing and competition, to forecast effects on employment.