North Sea oil rigs are experiencing worker shortages, according to a study published by the Aberdeen and Grampian Chamber of Commerce in Scotland.
The body's ninth study, entitled "Oil and Gas", reports that activity levels are "below average" in the region, emphasising that the sector is affected by "a chronic shortage of skilled workers" and an "inadequate transport infrastructure".
Operators and subcontractors in the oil and gas sector surveyed in the study employ around 50,000 workers in the UK and 275,000 across the world.
According to the report, all operators and 86 pct of subcontractors are seeking to recruit new staff. According to the report, recruitment problems are "just as severe" now for the majority of operators (57 pct) and subcontractors (73 pct) as they were a year ago.
"It is time for the government to reinvest in the gas and oil sector, which we are going to be heavily dependent upon for a long time," said Geoff Runcie, chief executive of the Chamber of Commerce.
"The results of the study show that both activity and morale are higher internationally than in the national (British) sector," he added.