Professor David Elmes, who leads the Global Energy Research Network at Warwick Business School and has more than 20 years experience in the energy industry, said:
"The job losses at BP are symptomatic of the wider challenges facing the industry. Coronavirus has reduced oil demand and the price per barrel has plummeted, but that has happened in a wider context of short-term and long-term decline.
"Some industry forecasts had acknowledged a flattening off in long-term demand last year, before the pandemic began.
"All firms in the sector will all be looking at how they can cut costs, shift their activities to the lowest cost field, trim investment, and thinking hard about what dividend they can pay.
"BP and the other European-based international companies have already said they will become less focused on oil and gas over time. If this situation continues, there will be intense discussions about what can they do to move faster."