New facility expansion creates global oil and gas hub in Newtownabbey

Mar 22, 2007

A new Assembly and Test Facility has been opened at the Schlumberger Completions Product Centre in Newtownabbey.

This multi-million pound expansion, supported by Invest Northern Ireland, has increased the capacity of the Centre by incorporating state-of-the-art test equipment to support the design, qualification and manufacture of specialised products for advanced, intelligent oil and gas well completions.

Over 200 guests including representatives from Schlumberger’s global operations and local employees attended this morning’s ceremonial event.

The Schlumberger Centre at Invest NI’s Monkstown Industrial Estate now includes a unique deep well simulator capable of simulating downhole temperature and pressure conditions, making the site one of the most advanced testing facilities in the world.

Speaking at the opening of the new facility, Mr Stephen Quinn, Permanent Secretary at the Department of Enterprise, Trade & Investment, said:  “The decision to expand Schlumberger’s Newtownabbey plant clearly demonstrates the confidence that global companies have in Northern Ireland’s manufacturing sector. Manufacturing companies can no longer compete on cost alone but knowledge-intensive, technology-led strategies can help firms to compete internationally by exploiting the potential of added value products and services.

“This expansion is helping Schlumberger to carry out extensive testing on highly customised components for international oil and gas clients. This sends a strong positive message about Northern Ireland and the development of our manufacturing sector.”

Also speaking at the opening event, Gordon Ballard, Schlumberger UK Chairman, said:

“With Invest NI’s support, this investment has resulted in the creation of an advanced facility that allows us to manufacture and test customized, high-tier completions products for our worldwide customers.  The highly skilled workforce, support infrastructure and knowledge base available in Northern Ireland have allowed us to quickly increase capacity in our Monkstown site to meet the growing demand for our products and services.”

Schlumberger is the world’s leading oilfield services company supplying technology, integrated project management and information solutions to customers in the oil and gas industry. The company employs more than 70,000 people of over 140 nationalities working in approximately 80 countries.

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