Esgian Week 25 Report: Mixed Results in Exploration Drilling

Sunday, June 23, 2024

Esgian provides an update on exploration drilling in its Week 25 Rig Analytics Market Roundup.

Report Summary

Drilling Activity and Discoveries

Oslo-listed BlueNord announced on Monday the start-up of drilling operations on the Harald East Middle Jurassic well (HEMJ) in the Danish North Sea.

Occidental Petroleum (Oxy) encountered non-commercial hydrocarbons at the Orange #1 exploration well on Mississippi Canyon Block 216 in the US GOM and the well has been plugged and abandoned. The company is now evaluating results following logging operations at the Ocotillo #1 exploration well on Mississippi Canyon Block 40.

Murphy Oil Corporation is currently drilling the Mormont #3 well in the US GOM and expects the well to come online in the third quarter of 2024.

Diamond Offshore semisubmersible Ocean Apex arrived at the Fletcher-5H well site off Australia over the weekend to start its P&A contract with Santos.

Vietnam's PVEP-POC is preparing to start drilling operations next month as part of the third phase of the Dai Hung field development.

Wintershall DEA has made a gas condensate discovery in the North Sea offshore Norway. The discovery was made while drilling the 35/11-27 S exploration well targeting the Cuvette prospect.

Equinor's Barents Sea exploration well 7220/2-2, targeting the Snøras prospect has proven dry. The well is located in the production licence 1080 and was drilled by Transocean semisubmersible Transocean Enabler.

Aker BP has discovered gas in the exploration well 7324/6-2 targeting the Ferdinand Nord prospect in the Barents Sea, offshore Norway. The well was drilled by Saipem semisubmersible Scarabeo 8 and is the first well drilled in the production licence 1170.


Posco International E&P Malaysia is starting a site survey operation over the PM 524 block offshore Malaysia this week.

Conrad Asia Energy now expects to reach a Final Investment Decision (FID) on its Mako gas field development in Indonesia in the fourth quarter of 2024, rather than mid-year 2024 as previously targeted.

Baron Oil, the operator of the Chuditch PSC in Timor-Leste, announced Wednesday that the licence had entered Contract Year Three, which includes a commitment to drill an appraisal well (Chuditch-2) on the Chuditch gas field.

Six oil and gas companies have secured exploration licences to store CO2 in four areas in the North Sea, offshore Norway. Two of the licences have been offered to Equinor. One licence has been offered to a group consisting of Vår Energi, OMV (Norge), and Lime Petroleum, while another licence has been offered to a group consisting of Aker BP and PGNiG Upstream Norway.

Mobilisation/Rig Moves

Stena Drilling 10,000-ft drillship Stena Forth has arrived in Las Palmas, Canary Islands, where it will join several other floating rigs undergoing surveys and contract preparations ahead of future work.

ARO Drilling 300-ft jackup ARO 3002 has returned to Saudi Arabia after spending around two months at a yard in Bahrain undergoing maintenance.

Following the rig’s delivery in late May 2024, ARO Drilling 350-ft jackup Kingdom 2 is en route to Saudi Arabia, where it will soon begin its maiden eight-year charter for Saudi Aramco.

Diamond Offshore has stated that its planned merger with Noble Corp. will not affect the timing of its planned shipyard project for Ocean BlackRhino in Las Palmas in the Canary Islands, currently scheduled for the fourth quarter of 2024.

The ME-ADS-owned 300-ft jackup Sea Challenger has arrived off Sharjah, UAE onboard the heavy lift vessel Seaway Albatross, following mobilisation from Greece.

Odfjell Drilling managed semisub Hercules is en route to Canada after a brief stop in the Canary Islands.

Shelf Drilling jackups Shelf Drilling Achiever and Main Pass IV have been loaded onto heavy lift vessel Seaway Hawk and are being moved from Saudi Arabia to West Africa, where they are to be marketed for work.

PV Drilling jackup PV Drilling VI arrived and docked in the MTRA Area-A, Kemaman Anchorage, Peninsular Malaysia earlier this week.

Other News

Etu Energias, SA has acquired a 5% interest in Block 32, 9% in Block 14, and 4.5% in Block 14K offshore Angola from Galp.

Longboat Energy has agreed to sell its 50.1% holding in Longboat Japex Norge (LJN) to its joint venture partner Japan Petroleum Exploration Co. Ltd ("JAPEX").

Diamond Offshore is continuing to pursue work for drillships West Dorado, West Draco and Tidal Action under its recently signed marketing agreements and will continue to operate and compete as an independent company until its merger with Noble Corp. closes.

Paratus Energy said Wednesday it would launch a private placement of new shares and list's the company's shares on Euronext Growth Oslo.

Awilco Drilling and Keppel FELS (now Seatrium) have agreed to settle all claims, disputes, and amounts owing between them arising from the termination of the newbuilding contracts for two semisubmersible drilling rigs.

Energean has agreed to sell its assets in Egypt, Italy and Croatia to an entity controlled by Carlyle International Energy Partners (“Carlyle”) for an enterprise value (“EV”) of up to $945 million.

Magda Chambriard took office as president of Brazilian state oil company Petrobras in a ceremony on 19 June 2024. Speaking at the event, Chambriard said investments in exploration and production are essential to finance the energy transition.

Categories: Offshore Drilling CCUS Oil and Gas Drilling Rigs

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