Bassoe Rig Analytics weekly rig market round-up (week 7)

Bassoe Rig Analytics weekly rig market round-up (week 7)
This week Transocean announced multiple new rig contracts and extensions, plus the retirement of its 2001-built harsh-environment semisub Leiv Eiriksson. Meanwhile, drillship Stena IceMAX completed drilling at the Perseverance-1 wildcat offshore the Bahamas.

In case you missed it, you can access our previous Rig Market Round-Up here. 


Rig Contracts

In its recent fleet update, Transocean announced some new contracts and extensions, an early termination and a further rig retirement. In addition to those already reported by Bassoe Rig Analytics, Transocean has been awarded two new one-well deals for semisub GSF Development Driller III with Shell and BHP Biliton offshore Trinidad, a one-well extension for semisub Transocean Norge with Equinor Norway, an extension for semisub Paul B Loyd Jr with Chrysaor in British waters, and a seven-well extension for drillship Dhirubhai Deepwater KG1 off India with Reliance. Additionally, it is now confirmed that semisub Deepwater Nautilus received an early termination from Petronas Malaysia in November and is now stacked. Transocean believes 'the purported notice of early termination is not valid ' and is pursuing applicable remedies. 

It is understood that Vantage Drilling jackup Sapphire Driller will no longer undertake the planned drilling campaign for NewAge offshore the Congo. It had initially been planned that jackup Topaz Driller would carry out the job, starting in June 2020 however this was delayed due to the Coronavirus challenges and the contract was novated to Sapphire Driller but then later cancelled. Sapphire Driller does, however, have another contract lined up this year with Trident Energy offshore Equatorial Guinea, which is now expected to begin around Late May.

Vantage Drilling ultra-deepwater drillship Tungsten Explorer is now expected to begin its drilling campaign offshore Cyprus during the final quarter of 2021. The work had initially been planned to begin during Q3 2020 but was hampered by the Covid-19 pandemic. The rig is stacked in Cyprus.

Diamond Offshore ultra-deepwater semisub Ocean Courage is expected to commence its new drilling campaign with Petrobras offshore Brazil around the end of April. The rig will be firmly committed to the operator until mid-2023.

It is understood that Woodside will commence its drilling campaign at the Greater Western Flank-3 offshore Australia using Diamond Offshore semisub Ocean Apex in March or April this year. The rig is currently stacked in Perth, Australia.

Drilling Activities & Discoveries


ONGC has made a new oil and gas discovery with its exploratory well B-126N-1, drilled north of the Mukta field. The well flowed gas at the rate of 298,293 cubic metres per day and oil at 789 barrels per day from one interval, while a second interval flowed oil at 1289 bpd and gas at nearly 35.1 Mcmd.

Ultra-deepwater drillship Stena IceMAX has concluded its drilling campaign offshore the Bahamas after having drilled the Perseverance-1 well for BPC. The rig also has a one-well plus options campaign lined up with Repsol offshore Mexico this year.

Eurasia Drilling jackup Mercury has completed its long-term contract with Lukoil in the Russian sector of the Caspian Sea and is now stacked in Khalinskaya. The rig has no other contracts in place. Meanwhile, jackup Neptune may continue working with Lukoil in the same area until May 2022, however this is dependent on results of the current well in progress. 

PEMEX has been approved by CNH to spud Tekuani-1EXP exploration well off the coast of Tabasco. The well is located in shallow water and the Mexican NOC intends to use Seadrill jackup West Oberon. The Jackup is scheduled to commence operation February 17th and the campaign will take an estimated 52 days. The rig is already on a long-term contract with the operator that is due to continue until late 2025.

Vantage Drilling jackup Topaz Driller is now scheduled to commence its drilling campaign with Eni offshore Montenegro during March. The rig will undertake a 180-day campaign with the operator. Meanwhile, Vantage Drilling jackup Pearl Driller (also known as Soehanah) is expected to conclude its current drilling campaign with Petronas offshore Indonesia near the end of this month, however this is dependent on the ongoing program requirement.

The Norwegian Petroleum Safety Authority has given Lundin consent to use Seadrill harsh-environment semisub West Bollsta for completing well 16/1-CA-1 H on the Rolvsnes field.

Harsh-environment semisub COSLInnovator has spudded the Jerv exploration well (15/12–25) in Norwegian production licence 973 for operator Chrysaor. This is the first well of a two-well campaign that will also include drilling of the Ilder wildcat (15/12–26). A contingent side-track and well testing may be performed to evaluate any discovery. Chrysaor is the operator with 50% working interest, while OKEA holds 30% and Petoro the remaining 20%.


Rig Demand


Petrofac has been awarded a new drilling management services contract with Carnarvon Petroleum, covering work at the Buffalo redevelopment, offshore East Timor in the Timor Sea. The deal covers planning, detailed well design drilling execution and all associated procurement. It is understood that the Buffalo redevelopment will initially involve the drilling of the Buffalo-10 well, with drilling targeted in 2021 using a jackup.

Santos and its licence partners are continuing to plan for the drilling of the Apus and Pavo exploration wells offshore Australia this year. The wells are situated in the Bedout basin close to the Dorado field, which is planned to be developed in the coming years. Pavo-1 is scheduled to spud in late 2021 and Apus-1 in early 2022, subject to rig availability.

JV partners CGX Energy and Frontera had the drilling deadline for the Makarapan-1 exploration well offshore Guyana, extended from 12 Feb 2021 to 11 Feb 2022. The exploration well is located in the Demerara block and the JV continues to advance preparatory work.

Azinam is planning to drill the Gazania-1 exploration well in Block 2B, offshore South Africa. The planned spud date is in Q3 2021 and is likely to require a floating rig for the drill.


Newbuilds & Sales


Transocean has now confirmed that its 2001-built harsh-environment semisub Leiv Eiriksson is held for sale. It is understood that the rig will be sold for scrap.


Rig Mobilization


Ultra-deepwater drillship Maersk Venturer is making its final preparations in Las Palmas, Canary Islands, ahead of its upcoming mobilization to Ghana. The rig will be put to work under an approximate 4-year contract with Tullow Oil, due to begin around April.

Jackup Maersk Integrator has left the Eidsvoll well location in PL 617 where it had been drilling for MOL Norge and is headed to the Tambar field where it will continue operations with Aker BP.

Odfjell Drilling harsh-environment semisub Deepsea Aberdeen is now mobilizing to the Dvalin field, offshore Norway, to commence a new contract with Wintershall Dea. The contract consists of four firm and three optional wells with an expected firm duration of approximately 300 days. The campaign will consist of work at the Dvalin, Bergknapp and Vega fields.


Oil Price

Oil prices increased again on Thursday, reaching thirteen-month highs after concerns that the unusually cold conditions in Texas would disrupt US Crude production for days or even weeks. Brent Crude climbed past $65 per barrel, while US West Texas Intermediate crude reached over $61 per barrel. 


Energy Transition


AGR has signed a new framework agreement with Norwegian state-owned Gassnova SF. Gassnova acts on behalf of the Norwegian Ministry of Petroleum and Energy and facilitates the development of technology and solutions to enable cost efficient and progressive solution for the capture and storage of CO2. AGR will act as technical advisors to Gassnova by offering technical expertise across geoscience, reservoir, drilling and well engineering disciplines in addition to facilities and cost engineering.


Rig Technology and Upgrades


Stena Drilling has ordered a 5th MPD system for Stena Forth with delivery expected in Q3/Q4 2021. This last purchase of a Managed Pressure Drilling system means that the Stena Forth will join the Stena Carron, Stena DrillMAX and Stena IceMAX as being MPD Operational. After installment, Stena Drilling's drillship fleet will be 100% MPD capable. The Company have drilled ten MPD wells since 2016 and has a further ten planned for 2021 alone.


Other Market News


Malaysia's state energy firm Petroliam Nasional Bhd, or Petronas,  will offer up a total of 13 offshore exploration blocks in its upcoming licensing round. The Malaysia Bid Round (MBR), aimed at attracting investors to undertake more extensive exploration activities, will launch on February 26. Included in the offering are six discovered fields and four deepwater blocks adjacent to the coast of the state of Sarawak and Sabah. 

Egypt has kicked off its latest bid round for exploration and exploitation of oil and natural gas in 24 blocks.The offering is understood to include nine blocks in the Mediterranean Sea, 12 in the Western Desert and three in the Gulf of Suez. The round will close in early August. 


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Data: Bassoe Analytics, Image attribution: Rab Lawrence

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