A major oil installation is to be decommissioned in the isles creating over 30 new jobs.
The news comes after French-owned company Veolia won the contract to dismantle and recycle the Buchan Alpha floating production vessel from oil field owner and operator Repsol Sinopec Resources UK.
The vessel ended production on 12th May after 36 years, in which time it produced nearly 150 million barrels of oil.
The decommissioning work, to be carried out at Lerwick Port Authority’s (LPA) Dales Voe and Greenhead Base, is expected to create 35 jobs and last for a period of 17 months.
LPA chief executive Sandra Laurenson said: “The success of Veolia in being awarded this project to be carried out at Lerwick is great news for the port and Shetland.
“It underlines our considerable experience in decommissioning and the deep-water port’s expanded capacity and capabilities in handling such projects, with both Greenhead and Dales Voe bases to be involved.”
Shetland MSP Tavish Scott also welcomed the news, saying: “This is tremendous news for Shetland. Lerwick Port Authority and their partner companies have been working very hard to attract decommissioning business to Shetland.
“This is a real contract after months of effort and is a very positive signal to the oil industry that Shetland is the place for this work.
“We are in the right place on the map, we have the skills and expertise and the harbour facilities to undertake decommissioning. I hope today’s announcement is the first of many and will open up a new industry for Shetland.”