Page last updated at 17:47 GMT, Friday, 3 April 2009 18:47 UK

90 staff redundant at drill firm

Drill
The company makes drill bits for the oil and gas industry

An east Belfast company which makes drill bits for the oil and gas industry is to make up to 90 staff redundant.

The job cuts by Hughes Christensen follow 45 redundancies in February.

The company is part of US-owned Baker Hughes which is reducing its global workforce by 3,000 - almost 8% of its staff.

It said the job cuts were a response to "the stalled world economy, lower oil prices and continuing scaled-back exploration and development spending".

"Drilling activity has fallen in the UK, and international activity is also forecasted to decline in the coming months."

About 400 people were employed at the company's plant in Belfast.

The news came at the end of a turbulent week for the economy in Northern Ireland.

Bombardier Aerospace announced almost 1,000 redundancies on Thursday while about 500 other industrial jobs have been lost across Northern Ireland this week.

Employment Minister Sir Reg Empey said 2% of the manufacturing workforce had lost their jobs in the space of a few days.



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