OSLO, Jan. 8 (Xinhua) -- Many Norwegian engineers who work for oil and gas companies accept reduced salary in order to save their jobs, newspaper Aftenposten reported Sunday.
For almost one year the employees of the oil and gas supplier Apply Sorco have worked for ten percent lower salary than before.
Not long time ago this company employed 140 professionals, including consultants in Bergen. Now there is only 80 of them and last year the employees said yes to reduced salary in order to ensure that their jobs were secure.
"It is obvious that many suffer because of this. And not everyone support salary reduction as the right means. However, this is about survival. And we emlpoyees contribute in this way as a part of the team," Roar Mathisen with The Norwegian Society of Engineers and Technologists NITO told Aftenposten.
He expressed belief that otherwise around 25 to 30 more engineers would lose their jobs.
For the NITO members who work for Apply Sorco this means a money loss of 60,000 kroner (7,070 U.S. dollars) annually.
The leadership of the company also accepted salary reduction of 15 percent, according to the Aftenposten report.
"Although these arrangements are temporary, we as a union fear that this can have permanent influence on salary level. At the same tme it is difficult to choose something different when the company has been so pressed," Mathisen said.
He added that supplier companies are pressed by the big oil companies. In Aker Solutions there has been salary reduction of five percent since April last year.
"We chose not to accept salary reduction, because we think it is not the right way. We discuss rather cost reductions, but it will be really bad if this turns into competition in reducing workers's alaries," Aril Havik with Aker Solutins' labor union told Aftenposten.
Supplier company Aibel has also managed to avoid salary reductions.
"We have removed so many work positions that we managed without salary reductions. The problems is that this is not specially motivating for those that are left and that work further for an organization that is very pressed," Anne Oyen, leader of Aibel's Tekna group told Aftenposten. Tekna is the bigest labor union whose members are mostly civil engineers.
Since June 2014 there were 40,000 job cuts in oil sector and there are 21,107 unemployed engineers in the counties of Hordaland and Rogaland in western Norway, which is double as many as in Oslo municipality.