Shell will relocate some jobs from New Orleans to Houston as it moves forward with plans to cut its global workforce by 10,000 employees and contractors. The company started cutting jobs last year in response to low oil prices.Shell's statement plays things down, as you might expect.
Details are sparse on how the global cuts affect the roughly 1,900 workers based in One Shell Square in downtown New Orleans. Shell says it does not provide layoff counts by region. Workers close to the situation have reported that jobs may be moving to Houston in addition to cuts. They asked not to be named to protect their jobs.
In several statements sent to NOLA.com | The Times-Picayune through email, Shell said it is still evaluating changes in New Orleans, but will move "some individuals" to Houston in 2016. The company expects the relocations to affect less than 5 percent of its New Orleans workforce. That translates to fewer than 95 jobs total.The key to that whole five percent line is, "in 2016." After that, who knows? But it's likely that Shell will be moving more than just 95 jobs out of the city (out of the country?) Remember this chart? There aren't a lot of big drilling projects breaking even with oil selling at as close to free as it is.
Shell said it intends to maintain a presence in New Orleans over the long term.
"We plan to continue being an integral part of the Gulf Coast and New Orleans, which means continuously reviewing our portfolio to remain competitive, including assets and staffing needs," one statement said.