WOOD has won more work in the UK North Sea amid hopes the recent crude piece rally will boost activity in the area.

The Aberdeen-based engineering giant has won a contract to provide support services across Taqa’s North Sea production assets.

The five-year award covers work on a range of platforms.

Wood has been working on some of them under a previous contract with Abu Dhabi-owned Taqa. The new contract also covers work on the Brae Alpha and East Brae platforms.

The award provides a fillip for Wood at a time when oil services businesses working in the North Sea face big challenges. Oil and gas firms slashed spending in the area in response to the slump in demand triggered by the coronavirus crisis.

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The latest accounts filed for Taqa’s UK business show the company cut the valuation of its assets by $451m in March last year. The accounts for Taqa Bratani state: “The declining oil price, caused by the global Covid-19 pandemic and the supply challenge to the market, was considered to be an impairment trigger.”

The accounts cover the year ended December 31 2019, during which Taqa Bratani made $107m profit before tax.

They note that Taqa was awarded operatorship of the Greater Brae Area last year.

Rockrose Energy had previously acquired an operating interest in the Greater Brae assets through the purchase of Marathon Oil’s North Sea portfolio for £107m. Taqa claimed it was in a stronger position than Rockrose to be operator. Rockrose was acquired by Viaro Energy for £250m in July.

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The Brent crude price fell below $20 per barrel in April last year.

Brent crude sold for $63.36/bbl yesterday afternoon. It fetched around $70/bbl in January last year.