Demand from the world’s top oil companies for floating drilling units has climbed steadily in the past two years and is set to rise further through 2020 and 2021.
According to Rystad Energy, the energy research and business intelligence company, this trend is a result of the majors stepping up development and exploration activity in deepwater basins.
Floater demand surged from around 50 contract years in 2010 to peak at about 80 in 2014, before the oil-price slump caused operators to scale back floater contract commitments to less than 35 contract years in 2017.
Since then, majors ExxonMobil, Shell, BP, Chevron, Total and Eni have steadily increased deepwater contracting activity, having added almost 10 contract years since 2017.
Rystad Energy said that it expects demand to grow further towards 2022.