Hess adds more time to Noble rig contract

Offshore driller Noble Corporation has been awarded a contract extension for one of its semi-submersible drilling rigs operating in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico. 

In a fleet status report issued on Thursday Noble said that, instead of ending in early April, the contract with Hess for the Noble Paul Romano rig will last until mid-June 2018.

The rig has been working for Hess in the Gulf of Mexico since September 2016 with initial dayrate of $304,000. The dayrate has been reduced several times since then and, under the current contract, it now amounts to $115,000.

The Noble Paul Romano is of a Noble EVA 4000 design. It was built by Ingalls Shipbuilding Corp. in 1981 but it was upgraded in 2013. It can work in water depths of up to 6,000 ft, drill up to 25,000 ft, and accommodate 149 people.

Noble also said on Thursday that under the contract with Shell for its drillship Noble Bully II a standby period has been extended from April until December 2018. The drillship is currently in Singapore.

To remind, Shell was granted and has exercised the right to idle Noble Bully II, as well as two other drillships, for a period of up to 365 days. While idle, daily rig operating costs can be reduced by up to $100,000, depending on stacking strategy.

Following the conclusion of the idle period, the unit will earn a dayrate based on a market index or the newly established floor of $200,000 plus daily operating expenses, whichever is higher. Dayrate will be adjusted every six months thereafter until completion of the contract.

Offshore Energy Today Staff

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