Norway oil and gas workers end strike as government steps in

A strike in the Norwegian energy sector that threatened its oil and gas output at a time of a shortage in global supply, was ended on July 5th, the same day it started, after the Norwegian government intervened.

Norwegian offshore oil and gas workers went on strike on Tuesday as part of planned industrial action that could have cut the country’s gas exports by almost 60%.

Lederne union leader Audun Ingvartsen told Reuters that the strike was over. “Workers are going back to work as soon as possible. We are cancelling the planned escalation”.

The Norwegian Ministry of Labour confirmed it had exercised its right to intervene.

Labour Minister Marte Mjoes Persen said in a statement that “when the conflict can have such dire consequences for the whole of Europe, I have no choice but to intervene in the conflict”.

By Saturday the strike would have cut daily gas exports by 1.17m barrels of oil equivalent (boe), or 56% of daily gas exports, while 341,000 of barrels of oil would have been lost, the Norwegian Oil and Gas (NOG) employers’ lobby said.

Norway is Europe’s second-largest energy supplier after Russia, and its production has been in high demand because the country has been seen as a reliable and predictable supplier.

Russia’s Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline due to shut for maintenance for 10 days from July 11th.