Tyneside MP fears that the closure of oil and gas fields in the North Sea could impact the livelihoods of workers in the North East

A North Tyneside MP has reacted to the news that as many as 51 oil and gas fields in the North Sea could cease production by 2020, impacting North East jobs.

A recent parliamentary debate outlined that hundreds of jobs in the oil and gas industry could be lost, particularly in the North East, if the government does not intervene.

Representatives from all over Britain took part in the debate, all expressing their concerns over the effect that the job losses will have in their constituencies.

“We need action, and we need action now”

Those are the words of MP Alan Campbell, a Tyneside local who fought against the loss of shipbuilding 16 years ago, explained: “Hundreds of jobs in my constituency depend on the oil and gas industry, where times are, to put it mildly, very tough.”

Indeed, the closure of shipbuilding had a dramatic effect in the North East 20 or so years ago. Campbell fears similar scenes will be witnessed if the government does not fight to save offshore oil and gas jobs

“We have to be doing, and be seen to be doing, everything we can to safeguard those jobs, because they are some of the most highly skilled and dangerous jobs, and they are done by some of the most hard-working people I know.”

It is estimated that oil and gas fields directly employ more than 500 workers from the North East.

However, too add to this, numerous businesses in the North East are indirectly affected by oil and gas exploration in the North Sea. Thousands of jobs ranging from call centres employees to factory workers rely on the oil and gas industry in the North East for work.

A representative from Brogan Fuels stated “our links to the oil and gas industry are strong… our ability to stay afloat financially directly relates to how successful the oil and gas industry is in Scotland [North Sea]”.

What all of this means is that Mr. Campbell’s link to the loss of shipbuilding may not be a facetious statement at all, it may in fact be an accurate representation of what the loss of the gas fields in the North Sea could mean for the North East’s prosperity.

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