Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Influx of Norwegian Firms Could Bring 500 New Jobs

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Influx of Norwegian Firms Could Bring 500 New Jobs

Article excerpt

Byline: Peter McCusker

AN influx of Norwegian companies to the North East on the back of the global oil and gas boom could create up to 500 new highly-skilled jobs in the region in the next three years.

Norwegian logistics experts J Martens UK has just opened a base in Cramlington, Northumberland, and an announcement on a further two companies coming to the region is expected within weeks.

There are now more than 20 Norwegian companies in the North East and the figure is set to grow in the next few years, creating hundreds of skilled jobs. With full employment in Norway and Aberdeen, the global oil and gas boom means Norwegian energy companies are increasingly turning their sights to the North East.

They are desperate to recruit skilled staff and to tap into the expertise of the region's 50-plus companies with links to the offshore sector.

Magne Eide, marketing director of J Martens UK, said: "We think the North East will become more and more important for us, as many Norwegian companies plan to establish themselves in the area. Newcastle is quite a nice point for us and for many of the other Norwegian companies. It is a central point for trade across the UK and there is a deep pool of skilled labour."

Earlier this week Eastern Airways launched a daily service from Newcastle to Stavanger, the Norwegian town at the centre of the country's oil sector.

A party from regional development agency One NorthEast was one of the first to use the service in a bid to encourage further trade ties. Patrick Kendell, inward investment manager at ONE, said: "The North East and Norway have very similar business cultures, with mature supply chains and technologically advanced markets in the oil and gas sectors.

"Norway has a prosperous oil and gas future ahead, with exploration still at a high and many projects coming on stream providing opportunities in the supply chain for businesses in the North East."

He believes the lack of skilled staff is hindering Norwegian growth plans. …

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