Norwegian oil major Statoil has decided to terminate its contract with Transocean for the ultra-deepwater drillship Discoverer Americas over a lack of work.
The drillship has been on contract with Statoil since 2009 in support of exploration activities in East and North Africa and the Gulf of Mexico.
Statoil says it decided to cancel the contract early as it has been unable to secure additional activity for the rig for the remainder of the contract period, ending in May 2016.
Earlier this year, Statoil was able to renegotiate the day rate for the drillship down to USD$611,000 per day, down from $735,000, while sending the ship back to the Gulf of Mexico.
The contract cancellation was jointly announced by Transocean and Statoil late last week.
“Discoverer Americas has been a very good performer for Statoil, contributing to test deep-water and ultra-deep water prospectivity in Tanzania, Egypt, and the Gulf of Mexico and appraising the multiple high-impact discoveries in Tanzania. All operations were performed with solid drilling efficiency and a good safety culture. Without additional activity lined up, we unfortunately have to let the rig go prior to contract end,” says Tore Aarreberg, head of rig procurement.
Transocean said it expects to receive an early termination payment fully compensating the company as provided for in the contract.