Photo: Maersk Resilient rig; Source: Maersk Drilling

Extra five-well drilling gig for Maersk rig in North Sea

Offshore drilling contractor Maersk Drilling has secured five more wells with Petrogas E&P Netherlands for one of its harsh-environment jack-up rigs by replacing an option within the previously agreed contract. This will enable the rig to carry out a drilling campaign offshore the Netherlands once it completes its current assignment.

Maersk Drilling informed on Wednesday that it has agreed to an amendment of the deal with Petrogas for the Maersk Resolute jack-up rig, under which a newly entered five-well drilling contract will replace an option included in the previously entered contract.

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Morten Kelstrup, COO of Maersk Drilling, remarked: “We’re pleased to confirm that Maersk Resolute will continue on a drilling campaign after completing its current plugging and abandonment work scope. This contract is yet another testament to our excellent collaborative relationship with Petrogas, which includes a shared commitment to protecting the environment – something that has a particularly high priority in operations in the Dutch North Sea.”

Under the terms of this deal, the rig will be employed to drill three wells at the A15 field and two wells at the B10 field, both of which are located offshore the Netherlands. Maersk Drilling explained that the drilling contract is expected to start in the first quarter of 2024, in direct continuation of the rig’s previous work scope, with an estimated duration of 188 days.

The offshore drilling contractor disclosed that the minimum contract value of this deal is approximately $24.3 million, including an agreed fee for the use of the rig’s SCR system, and with provisions included to potentially increase the day rate depending on market conditions.

Furthermore, the drilling contract contains an additional one-well option. Maersk Drilling outlined that the drilling campaign will employ Maersk Resolute’s onboard high-efficiency Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) system which uses ammonia injection to convert NOx into harmless water and nitrogen, expectedly reducing NOx emissions by up to 98 per cent.

The 2008-built Maersk Resolute is a 350ft, Gusto-engineered MSC CJ50 high-efficiency jack-up rig, which is currently employed to plug and abandon a total of 31 wells in the Dutch sector of the North Sea in support of a rig sharing agreement between TotalEnergies EP Nederland and Petrogas E&P Netherlands.