The 26th Oil and Gas survey, conducted in partnership with the Fraser of Allander Institute, found that 38% of contractors surveyed were more confident about business on the UKCS compared to 10% that were less confident.
This compares with the low point of six months ago when only 12% of contractors surveyed were more confident and 47% were less confident.
However, 52% reported no change in their outlook, suggesting challenges remain in the marketplace.
Over half of the contractors, operators, and licensees questioned thought the market had reached the bottom of the current cycle while 26% believed it will do so within the next year.
By Jan. 1, 2018, 42% expected their business to be growing, compared with 16% who anticipated growth by January 2017, while only 2% anticipated further decline.
Most contractors (81%) expected to be involved indecommissioning in the next three to five years, with just over half of respondents (54%) reporting similar interests in renewables.
James Bream, research and policy director at Aberdeen & Grampian Chamber of Commerce, said: “We’re seeing some signs of recovery for the industry and the global outlook is certainly more positive than it was six months ago but it is clear that most companies are still suffering.
“We are hopefully stepping into a more prosperous period in due course but that is not upon us for now. It seems clear that many believe that we won’t return to previous levels of activity and that perhaps we shouldn’t call this a downturn. This isn’t a ‘new norm,’ it is just normal.”