WorldOil ION to cut 25% of workforce in cost cutting initiative ION Geophysical has announced an aggressive cost reduction initiative as part of an overall plan to align its operating expenses with business conditions and recent declines in the commodity price environment for crude oil and natural gas. Shell-BG merger receives EU antitrust clearance THE HAGUE -- Royal Dutch Shell’s combination with BG Group has received unconditional merger clearance from the European Commission, Shell said Wednesday. Schlumberger acquires synthetic diamond specialist Novatek Schlumberger announced Wednesday that it has acquired Novatek Inc. and Novatek IP, LLC, U.S.-based companies that specialize in synthetic diamond technology primarily for the oil and gas industry. GeoPark in new oil field discovery in Colombia GeoPark Ltd. has discovered a new oil field following the drilling of exploration well Jacana 1, located on the Llanos 34 Block in Colombia. GeoPark operates and has a 45% working interest in the block. PGS names third Ramform vessel to be cold stacked PGS has decided to cold-stack the Ramform Viking after she completes a multi-client project offshore East Newfoundland in late October, the company said Wednesday. CGG completes Hail-Shuweihat survey for ADNOC CGG, with the support of its Seabed Geosolutions joint venture with Fugro, has completed the acquisition of a 3D seismic survey over the Hail and Shuweihat oil and gas fields in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, one of the world’s most environmentally sensitive areas. OPEC said to be split on need for long-term oil-price forecasts Saudi Arabia and its Gulf allies are at odds with Iran and other OPEC members over whether the organization should include oil-price forecasts in its long-term strategy report, according to three of the group’s delegates. ConocoPhillips to cut 1,800 jobs as oil downturn seen prolonged ConocoPhillips, the fourth-largest U.S. oil company, plans to reduce its workforce by 10% in the latest sign that the energy industry is preparing for a longer downturn. Vorpal Energy Solutions, Enventure Global Technology collaborate on refrac market Vorpal Energy Solutions and Enventure Global Technology have launched Drill2Frac technology and ESeal Refrac (RF) Liner respectively, in a strategic collaboration to leverage their respective technology offerings for helping the industry harness the burgeoning refrac market. Denbury Resources appoints new COO Denbury Resources has announced the hiring of Chris Kendall as COO. Sandvik Materials Technology bags two key orders for control lines in Middle East Sandvik Materials Technology, a division within the Sandvik Group, has been awarded two important contracts for control lines for the oil and gas industry in the Middle East.