Chevron Nigeria Limited says it will downsize its workforce in Nigeria by 25 per cent across various levels in the oil firm, a development frowned at by the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria.
The oil firm said the development followed the evolving negative operational environment in the energy sector.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that workers of the oil firm under the auspices of the PENGASSAN on Friday in Lagos protested the looming sack of 600 employees.
Esimaje Brikinn, CNL’s General Manager Policy, Government and Public Affairs, in a response statement made available to NAN on Friday, noted that the 25 per cent job cut was to reposition the oil firm for greater efficiency and competitiveness.
The statement was, however, silent on the exact number of workers to be affected by the job cut, but said 25 per cent of its workers will be sacked.
Brikinn said: “CNL and its affiliates, confirms that it is reviewing its manpower requirements in the light of the changing business environment, while continuing to evaluate opportunities to improve capital efficiency and reduce operating costs.
“In this process, the company will be streamlining its workforce and improving service delivery and overall performance at all levels.
“This will increase efficiency and effectiveness, retain value, reduce cost, and generate more revenue for the Federal Government of Nigeria.
“It is important to note that all our employees will retain their employment until the reorganization process is completed,” he noted.
“CNL supports the Federal Government in its objectives and efforts to build a prosperous Nigeria. In the area of employment generation, the company has several social investments which are helping to provide employment for thousands of Nigerians.”
Brikinn dismissed speculations that the exercise was to outsource jobs done by Nigerians to foreigners, adding that there are no plans to migrate Nigerian jobs outside the country.
He explained: “We have prospects for our company in Nigeria; however, we must make the necessary adjustments in light of the prevailing business climate; and we need everyone’s support to get through these tough times stronger, more efficient and more profitable, in order to sustain the business.”
He further stated that CNL is in alignment with both its Joint Venture partners, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and the Department of Petroleum Resources, on the process.
He said: “We are actively engaging our workforce to ensure they understand why this is being done. We will continue to consistently engage all relevant stakeholders, including the leadership of the employee unions as we continue this process of business optimization.
“At CNL, the welfare and safety of our workforce is one of our highest priorities.
“Making changes to the organization is never easy for anyone that will be impacted, but it is necessary to improve our ability to remain competitive in Nigeria.
“Reducing the cost and improving the efficiency of our operations is critical to generating more revenues for the Federal Government of Nigeria.”