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Decom North Sea (DNS), the representative body for the offshore decommissioning industry, has reinforced its commitment to the future of decommissioning by signing up to the Engineering Construction Industry Training Board’s (ECITB) Skills Charter.

Safeguarding the future workforce is of particular importance to the UK decommissioning sector. During the next 35 years, over 5,500 wells, 400 facilities and 10,000km of pipelines are forecast to be decommissioned. At an aggregate estimated cost in excess of £50 billion (2014 prices), it is imperative that the next generation of skilled workforce is in place to ensure this work is undertaken as efficiently and cost-effectively as possible by the UK market. Decommissioning also represents an excellent opportunity for specialisation and international competiveness of the UK supply chain (equipment, services and facilities), thus having a significant impact on employment and the broader economy.

The ECITB Skills Charter provides public recognition of commitment to skills development to ensure the long term competence of the workforce. The signing of the Charter between DNS and the ECITB signals the start of a new partnership approach between the two organisations, for collaboration across a range of areas that will benefit the decommissioning industry. The many shared member companies of the two organisations will help ensure the transferability of a competent workforce for the benefit of the future oil and gas industry.

Nigel Jenkins, Decom North Sea chief executive welcomes the Charter: “Decommissioning is a growth area for the offshore industry and this new relationship is highly significant for future skills development, with the potential to pioneer new industry standards and the extension of the range of approved training courses and providers available to members.

“DNS is committed to a collaborative skills agenda and will promote the principles of the Skills Charter to its member companies.”

Andy Brown, director of regional operations for the ECITB said: “We are delighted to be part of this new collaborative relationship with Decom North Sea. We look forward to working together to develop new industry-wide solutions that meet the long-term skills requirements of the oil and gas industry.”

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