Workers to strike at three Total North Sea oil and gas platforms

Union officials had met representatives from Total on Thursday where the union made a series of counter-proposals, to be discussed at talks scheduled for August 23. (Reuters)
Updated 16 August 2018
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Workers to strike at three Total North Sea oil and gas platforms

LONDON: Workers at three of French oil company Total’s North Sea oil and gas platforms will go ahead with a 24-hour strike on Monday despite holding talks with the company on Thursday in a dispute over pay and conditions, the Unite union said.
The three platforms are Alwyn, Elgin and Dunbar.
“The scheduled 24-hour stoppage on Monday (20 August) will still go ahead as planned,” Unite said in an emailed statement.
The workers are striking over proposed changes to their working rotas and pay.
The union said its officials had met representatives from Total on Thursday where the union made a series of counter-proposals, to be discussed at talks scheduled for Aug. 23.
Unite said further strikes are planned for Sept. 3, Sept. 17, Oct. 1, Oct. 15 and Oct. 29.
The fields account for about 10 percent of Britain’s gas output, while their oil production contributes about 45,000 to 50,000 barrels per day (bpd) to the Forties and Brent Blend crude streams.
Workers have already held four strikes at the sites as part of the dispute.
The latest, a 12-hour strike on Aug. 13, contributed to a near 4 percent rise in prompt British wholesale gas prices.


Vietnam and India agree to boost trade, defense cooperation

Updated 30 min 47 sec ago
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Vietnam and India agree to boost trade, defense cooperation

  • Currently, India has 182 investment projects worth $816 million in Vietnam
  • Vietnamese businesses have a mere seven projects worth some $6 million in India

HANOI, Vietnam: Vietnam and India have agreed to boost their trade while expanding their cooperation in defense and security, among other areas.
Speaking to reporters at a joint press briefing in Vietnam’s capital, Hanoi, Indian President Ram Nath Kovind said Tuesday that he believes the bilateral trade volume will reach $15 billion by 2020, up from $12.8 billion last year.
“We agreed to encourage our industry to tap into the growing economic opportunities in our own countries and in the region,” Kovind said. “India-Vietnam economic relations are on an upswing.”
“We committed to further deepen our defense and security cooperation. I reiterated India’s commitment to provide training support for Vietnam’s armed forces,” he added.
Kovind said he and Vietnamese President Nguyen Phu Trong also reviewed the implementation of an Indian credit line of $100 million to build high-speed patrol vessels for Vietnam’s coast guard.
Trong, who is also head of the Communist Party, said the two countries will find ways to boost their modest investment.
Currently, India has 182 investment projects worth $816 million in Vietnam, while Vietnamese businesses have a mere seven projects worth some $6 million in India.
Kovind is on a three-day visit to Vietnam, where he is scheduled to meet with Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc later Tuesday before departing.