Jindal issues statement on McDermott International’s announcement of plans to shut down Morgan City fabrication yard
HOUMA, La. (AP) — McDermott International says it will close its Morgan City fabrication facility and marine base in Amelia in coming months, and its operations will be moved to Altamira, Mexico.
The Houston-based energy services and engineering firm estimated 350 workers will be let go when the yard is shuttered either late this year or early next.
After many months of consideration, Stephen M. Johnson, chairman of the board, president and chief executive officer, said Monday the company made the decisions, which are driven by the evolving market demands of the offshore engineering and construction industry in the Gulf of Mexico.
McDermott International announced in July it will close its last remaining New Orleans office in October.
Jindal issues statement
BATON ROUGE, La. — Gov. Bobby Jindal released a statement Monday on McDermott International’s decision to suspend operations of its historic Morgan City fabrication yard, which is anticipated to be finalized in early 2014.
McDermott International’s decision will result in employee reductions at their fabrication yard, a news release from the governor’s office stated.
Jindal will travel to the fabrication yard Tuesday to meet with local officials to discuss future employment op-portunities for the workers impacted by McDermott’s decision, the news release stated.
Jindal’s statement follows:
“This is obviously very disappointing news for our people and our entire state. McDermott’s fabrication yard has been a source of pride for the Bayou Region and all of Louisiana for many years. Unfortunately, an increasing amount of deepwater fabrication work for the Gulf of Mexico requires much deeper water depths than are available at McDermott’s yard here, which was the primary factor driving the company’s decision.
“We have worked closely with local and corporate officials of McDermott for the last two years in an attempt to find a way to keep this yard open. Unfortunately, the water depth there has made it very difficult for the company to compete for heavy deepwater projects. LED provided incentive proposals to try to help the company secure major new work for the yard, but unfortunately the timing of those potential projects hasn't worked out to enable the yard to stay open.
“Fortunately, many employers in the Bayou Region are adding jobs right now, such as Bollinger Shipyards, Danos, Intermoor, Leevac Shipyards, Oceaneering, Gulf Island, and Edison Chouest Offshore, so LED FastStart and the Louisiana Workforce Commission will work with the company to help find good job opportunities for those workers in the Bayou Region over the next six to nine months as the yard’s work slows down.
“I will be traveling to the fabrication yard tomorrow with LED Secretary Stephen Moret and Louisiana Work-force Commission Executive Director Curt Eysink to meet with local officials and McDermott officials and employees to help workers transition and find new employment opportunities in our state. Officials from other companies seeking to hire workers—including Bollinger Shipyards, Danos, Edison Chouest Offshore, and oth-ers — will also be in attendance.
“Earlier today, McDermott President/CEO Steve Johnson committed that McDermott will renew its leases at the site in order to preserve the opportunity to restart operations at the yard when and if market conditions improve. Additionally, he committed to LED that McDermott would entertain offers from other companies that could make use of the location in partnership with McDermott. LED also will be connecting McDermott with some of the large industrial companies that may have a need for modular fabrication work that could be performed at that facility in the future.
“No matter what happens with the future of McDermott’s fabrication yard, we will continue to exhaust every possible avenue before us to attract new jobs to this area.”