Chevron’s Nigerian subsidiary has announced that it will slash its local workforce by 25% in order to offset costs and minimize losses.

The oil firm has been operating a joint venture with Nigeria’s state-owned Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) for decades, but this year has been the toughest financially owing to the weak demand for oil in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

Chevron says that it will carry out the adjustments “with great pain”, but say they are necessary to maintain the company’s competitiveness in the current business environment.

However, it did not announce how many exact jobs would be cut off; though the layoffs would strike across all tiers and operations.

There were some good news in the statement though. The company clearly affirmed that no jobs would be moved abroad, and it was in talks with employees over the proposed changes.

As such, all employees will maintain working in their positions until the restructuring is completed.

Oil is Nigeria’s (Africa’s largest economy) main export, and prices of the commodity have dropped sharply during the first half of 2020 as the coronavirus pandemic lowered demand worldwide. In April, global benchmark Brent hit a 21-year low below $16 a barrel, and the market prices are yet to return to normalcy.

The International Energy Agency (IEA) trimmed its 2020 oil demand forecast in September, citing caution about the pace of economic recovery from the pandemic.

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