NLNG explains reviewed wage scale for seafarers
The Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) has thrown more light into the issues around the review of the wage scale for seafarers, which triggered public outcry by the workers.
General Manager (External Relations) NLNG, Dr Kudo Eresia-Eke, said there was no strike by the seafarers as widely reported.
Eresia-Eke, who briefed journalists on the development, explained that the reviewed manning levels and wage scale for officers on BGT Vessels was in line with the depressed global market situation.
He noted that the company has recorded about 60 per cent reduction in its revenues, while global oil price dropped from $140 to about $40 per barrel.
He therefore confirmed that the reviewed manning levels and wage scale would become effective on September 1, 2016.
Emphasising that the decision was taken in good faith, Eresia-Eke said: “This action is in line with the depressed global market situation, and consistent with prevailing industry rates – and has been taken in the interest of the sustainability of the business.
“In reality, the reviewed wage scale cannot be said to be a salary reduction as claimed. The fact is that company has simply adjusted and aligned wages with internationally obtainable benchmarks.
“For example, our Nigerian officers’ dollar denominated wages upon conversion at existing rates far exceed wages for their peers who are paid in naira.
“This decision has been taken in absolute good faith, in response to a more than 60 per cent reduction in company revenues and global oil price, which have dropped from $140 to about $40 per barrel.
“Several BGT vessels have already been laid up while many more areas of reduction are being explored. This is consistent with the national oil company guideline for relevant industry operators to reduce operational expenditure (OPEX) costs by 40 per cent.
“These actions are also taken to minimise need for staff layoffs or retrenchment, as has been the case in several companies in the industry in response to the steep decline in revenue.
“Other conditions of Service of all NSML personnel including leave days will remain the same. Leave emoluments also earned in line with current wage scales will be unaffected.
“Management has already communicated these developments to staff and shall continue to engage them during the implementation process and appeals for the continuing understanding and cooperation of all parties”. He said.