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Talks continue on gas plant pay dispute

TALKS are continuing in an attempt to avert possible strike action at the Shetland Gas Plant which could stop production at its Sullom Voe site.

Unite regional officer John Boland met with representatives from Aker Solutions on Monday afternoon and more talks are planned.

A total of 81 Akes workers at the plant voted in a ballot last week in favour of strike action, or industrial action short of a strike, over an alledged failure to offer a four per cent pay rise and the alleged non-payment of holiday pay.

It is believed that Aker members took a four per cent pay cut in 2015 before being told to accept working an extra two weeks per year for no extra pay – in addition to losing a long-standing bonus scheme.

It is also thought that the staff had a pay freeze in last year despite the plant starting production in February 2016 and performing well.

Boland said on Monday evening that Unite had “constructive talks today with Aker, and will be meeting again next week to continue discussions”.

Aker said it hopes that industrial action could be avoided as negotiations continue.