North Norwegians to run Snøhvit

October 14, 2005, 10:50 CEST

Five out of eight members of Statoil’s Snøhvit operations organisation in Hammerfest come from or have ties with the three north Norwegian counties of Nordland, Troms and Finnmark.

These personnel account for 103 of the 167 people who have been appointed to the operations team for the Barents Sea field.

“We’re very pleased to have met our goal of at least 50 per cent regional affiliation for employees,” says Yngve Vassmyr, operations vice president for Snøhvit.

Statoil has found that people with local or regional ties often take a longer view of their job than those without roots in an area.

“Belonging to the area accordingly represents an important source of stability and continuity in the organisation,” Mr Vassmyr notes.

He emphasises that qualified applicants from all over Norway have shown great interest in working at the Hammerfest LNG plant on Melkøya, where the Snøhvit organisation will be based.

“We received about 1,400 applications from skilled workers for the first 40 jobs advertised,” Mr Vassmyr reports.

Fifty-three of the personnel with north Norwegian ties come from Finnmark, 23 from Troms immediately to the south and 12 from Nordland, the southernmost of the three counties.

Fifteen of the 103 people were living in other parts of Norway at the time they were appointed.

The great bulk of operations personnel have moved to Hammerfest, with at least 100 likely to be taxpayers there in 2006. Just over 40 will pay tax elsewhere in Troms og Finnmark.

Snøhvit is the first development in the Barents Sea, with its unprocessed wellstream due to start flowing from subsea production installations to the Hammerfest LNG plant in 2007.