BSP to take austerity measures

National 1 minute, 32 seconds

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

BRUNEI Shell Petroleum (BSP) is going for a major cost-cutting drive. According to an internal memo leaked on social media, some of the immediate changes include all directors taking a 20 per cent top line budget reduction.

When contacted yesterday, BSP confirmed the authenticity of the memo issued by Managing Director Ken Marnoch.

The memo says “Because of lack of transparency on overhead and support costs, we will implement a number of top down controls to constrain waste in spending.”

The austerity measures include reduction in merit budget, a yearly reduction in expat positions beginning 2015, while manpower “will be frozen at current headcount levels” with vacancies at four per cent.

All international business travel will require approval of manager or director. Certain “external events” including “MD Open House, BSJV Inter-Asset Golf and Wheels and Heels”, will be also cancelled, while the company’s “business meetings, workshops and events” will no longer be carried out at third party venues and hotels.

Training budgets will be reduced by 10 per cent to “drive prioritisation”, with training conducted only if approved by Shell Open University or “professional industry providers.”

A BSP spokesperson also confirmed that BSP did not issue the message via WhatsApp, where the content was circulating, stating that the memo was strictly internal and directed towards BSP staff.

Responding to the memo’s circulation, BSP said that they are “continually focused” on effectively managing their resources and costs and “looking to eliminate waste.”

“We (BSP) are also steadfast on ensuring the safety of our operations and in making sure that there are no unintended consequences when driving for the next efficiency of improvements”, the company said in a statement.

“Continuous improvement has to be part of the way we do things – all the best teams are always looking to learn and improve,” the statement added.

The Brunei Times