Esgian Week 3 Report: Drilling Units on the Move

Image courtesy of Stena Drilling
Image courtesy of Stena Drilling

No new drilling contracts were announced, but a Borr Drilling jackup has left Singapore, while a Shelf Drilling unit is preparing to embark on its journey to the same destination, according to Esgian’s Rig Analytics Market Roundup (Week 3).

Drilling Activity and Discoveries

Equinor Canada has asked for expressions of interest (EOIs) for feasibility and concept studies, front end engineering, planning and development for the company’s Bay Du Nord project offshore Newfoundland and Labrador.

UK operator Harbour Energy is expecting an increase in its capital expenditure for 2024, compared to the previous two years, driven by higher investment in the UK and internationally.

Trident Energy has begun its infill drilling campaign at the Ceiba and Okume fields on Block G in Equatorial Guinea with Island Drilling 4,000-ft semisubmersible Island Innovator.

Valeura Energy has announced plans to invest $8 million in pursuing exploration opportunities within its licenses offshore Thailand, and a total Capex in 2024 of $135 – $155 million, for 2024. The company has identified exploration opportunities at Wassana North, Nong Yao D, and the Ratree Prospect, located near the Jasmine field.


Jadestone Energy plans to begin drilling of a sidetrack well at the Montara field offshore Australia late in the fourth quarter of 2024 to restore production at the Skua-11 well, which has been offline since October 2023.

The Norwegian Ministry of Energy has offered ownership interests in a total of 62 production licences on the Norwegian shelf to 24 companies as part of the awards in the pre-defined areas (APA) 2023 licencing round. This is an increase compared with the three previous years.

Anasuria Hibiscus has made a Final Investment Decision (FID) for the Teal West development in the UK North Sea.

Shell has taken a final investment decision (FID) on the Victory gas field in the UK North Sea, approximately 47 km northwest of the Shetland Islands.  

According to market sources, Heritage Oil has put out a request for information regarding a drillship to work offshore Ghana for around 45 to 60 days, starting from late 2024 to early 2025. The proposed work is understood to be for the drilling of the Mansonia-1X exploration well on the Offshore South West Tano (OSWT) Block.

Market sources have indicated that TotalEnergies has issued a request for information (RFI) for a drillship to work in West Africa, potentially beginning in the fourth quarter of 2024. The RFI is for work that could take place offshore Namibia or the Congo.

The Israeli government has approved Energean’s field development plan for Phase 1 of the Katlan development. The company expects to make a final investment decision upon finalisation of engineering, procurement and construction terms for the project, which are currently under negotiation.

Mobilization/Rig Moves

The Greatship-owned 350-ft jackup Greatdrill Chaaru has commenced operations with Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) offshore India.

Borr Drilling's 350-ft jackup Idun has left Singapore for its upcoming contract with PTTEP in Thailand.

Shelf Drilling North Sea’s 400-ft jackup, Shelf Drilling Perseverance, is preparing to leave the UK ahead of a new contract in Vietnam.

The Foresight-owned 350-ft jackup Vivekanand 2 will perform its recertification and contract preparation in Mumbai, India.

Stena Drilling has taken delivery of the 12,000-ft drillship Stena Evolution from Samsung Heavy Industries’ yard in Geoje, South Korea.

Aban Offshore 300-ft jackup Aban IV has commenced operations with Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) offshore India.

Other News

Odfjell Drilling has announced the completion of the five-year main class renewal certificate for its 6,560-ft semisubmersible Deepsea Nordkapp.

Talos Energy has executed definitive agreements to acquire QuarterNorth, a privately-held U.S. Gulf of Mexico E&P company with ownership in several offshore fields, for $1.29 billion.

The Canada‐Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board (C‐NLOPB) is amending the timing under its Land Tenure System for low activity offshore regions. Previously operating on a four-year cycle, a new two-year or three-year cycle will be implemented for all low activity regions with the length determined following the close of the Call for Nominations (Area of Interest).

Vantage Drilling 375-ft jackup Topaz Driller will undergo extensive upgrades at a shipyard in Singapore later this year, ahead of a long-term contract with CPOC.

Despite the rig losing out on a recent tender with ONGC, Vantage Drilling stated that its client ONGC is continuing to look for options as to how to keep the 12,000-ft drillship Platinum Explorer in India and not lose it to other regions.

The 10,000-ft drillship West Polaris is expected to finish work for ONGC offshore India at the end of January 2024. After this, the current manager Vantage Drilling will mobilize the rig to Singapore to be handed over to its owner Seadrill, which will take over management of the rig.  

Energean is in discussions with Egyptian authorities to merge its Abu Qir, North El Amriya (NEA) and North Idku (NI) production concessions offshore Egypt into a single concession.

A commercial review of the Shell-operated Pensacola discovery in the UK North Sea has illustrated the commercial potential of the discovery based on two potential development scenarios. This comes following a positive well investment decision for the Pensacola appraisal well in December 2023.

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