Noble Voyager drillship; Source: Noble Corporation

Noble and Petronas strike a rig swap bargain offshore Suriname

Offshore drilling contractor Noble Corporation has worked out the details for a rig swap offshore Suriname with Petronas Suriname E&P, a subsidiary of Malaysia’s energy giant Petronas.

Noble Voyager drillship; Source: Noble Corporation

The two agreed that the drilling of one well in Block 52 offshore Suriname will be undertaken by the seventh-generation Noble Voyager drillship, based on an existing contract option. Noble explains that the work scope has been transferred to the 2015-built Noble Voyager rig from the Noble Discoverer semi-submersible rig, which was previously picked for the assignment. 

Blake Denton, Noble’s SVP of Marketing & Contracts, commented: “We are very pleased to continue our partnership and collaboration with Petronas in Suriname with this extension and agreement to transfer the work scope to the Noble Voyager. This will be the third of our rigs to work in Block 52 and we look forward to getting the Voyager back in action in early 2024.”

This contract extension is expected to start in February 2024, with an estimated duration of 120 days and a day rate of $470,000. The duo has further agreed to add a new one-well option to the contract. The Noble Voyager rig recently completed a contract offshore Mauritania with Shell.

The drillship has now moved to Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago, to embark on preparations for its job with Petronas. The Noble Voyager drillship is of a Samsung 96K design and can accommodate 230 people. This rig can operate in water depths of up to 12,000 ft and its maximum drilling depth is 40,000 ft.

This rig swap deal comes days after Noble Corporation got its hands on more work for one of its semi-submersible rigs offshore Colombia, South America. After reviewing the available day rate information within the offshore drilling player’s most recent fleet status report, Offshore Energy came to the conclusion that the Noble Valiant drillship, which is working in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, was the company’s highest-paid rig in 2H 2023.

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However, Transocean earned the top spot as the highest-paid offshore drilling contractor while its Deepwater Proteus drillship was the highest-paid rig in 2H 2023 not just in the company’s fleet but also compared to the available day rates rigs from Noble and Valaris have tucked under their belts.