Calgary-based Imperial Oil Ltd. says it will lay off about 200 of its 6,000 employees as part of a cost-cutting initiative.
The company, which has been reluctant to reduce staff during the current and previous industry downturns, also confirms it has reduced the number of contractors it employs by about 450 since the start of the year.
Imperial committed in March to cut spending by $1 billion, including a $500 million reduction in capital spending plus $500 million in lower operating expenses.
Job cuts at other oil and gas companies
The job cuts are part of a trend by Calgary oil and gas companies who have been reporting reduced earnings on lower commodity prices due to demand destruction caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Cenovus Energy Inc. and Husky Energy Inc. have announced they will cut as many as one in four jobs, potentially more than 2,000 workers, if their merger announced in October is closed as expected early next year.
Suncor, meanwhile, has announced it will cut as many as 1,930 jobs over 18 months to reduce total staff by 10 to 15 per cent.
“Throughout the past year, the company responded aggressively to the challenging business environment by reducing capital and operating expenditures and adjusting project pacing,” Imperial said in a posting on its website, adding it has reassessed its current and future business plans.
“We recognize any job losses are difficult for individuals and their families who may be affected. Impacted employees will be provided with company support, including outplacement services.”