£4million fund opened for Scottish decommissioning projects

A £4million fund has been launched to boost Scotland’s oil and gas decommissioning market.

The fourth round of the Decommissioning Challenge Fund has been opened by the Scottish Government, which follows three previous phases which provided £10m in support to firms across the country.

It was launched in 2017 to help Scotland gain a higher share of the £15.3bn forecast to be spent on UK North Sea decom projects between 2018-2027.

Energy Minister Paul Wheelhouse said the fresh funding will improve worker skills, support innovation and help reduce decom costs.

According to the Scottish Government website, a total of £10.3m has been dished out in the three previous rounds to 28 projects and partnerships including services firms Isol8 and Oil States in Aberdeen, and Dales Marine in Edinburgh.

It has also supported the newly redeveloped Kishorn Port, which landed its first major contract in December to host the Ocean GreatWhite, the world’s largest semi-submersible rig, for service work.

Mr Wheelhouse said: “Decommissioning North Sea infrastructure will help Scotland’s supply chain gain an even higher share of North Sea projects and capitalise global market opportunities by exporting knowledge and experience.

“As the industry continues to build on established capabilities and internationally recognised expertise, such as in well plugging and abandonment techniques, the fund plays a crucial role in supporting the future development of this growing industry.

“This fund will support innovation in the supply chain, further cost reduction and improve the recognised skills of the Scottish workforce – which is why it has proved so popular with businesses.”

The funding is open to expressions of interest until September 2 to fund projects in the 2019/20 financial year.

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