Bienvenidos a Cuba! The Scarabeo-9 Deepwater Drilling Rig Arrives in Havana

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January 20, 2012

HOUSTON -(Dow Jones)- An Italian drilling rig scheduled to drill a deep-water well offshore Cuba has arrived to the shores of Havana, Cuban media said Thursday.

The website said that the rig, dubbed Scarabeo-9, could be seen from Havana’s boardwalk, the website said. The rig will be operating for Spanish oil giant Repsol YPF SA (REPYY).

The rig was been inspected by U.S. officials during a stopover in Trinidad & Tobago. U.S. offshore regulators said that the vessel complied with existing international and U.S. standards. The rig is scheduled to start drilling later this year.

Cuba has little experience with offshore oil exploration. In 2004, Cuba drilled a deep-water well, which received little notice. Since then, the U.S. Geological Survey has said there could be a substantial amount of untapped oil off the Cuban coast. Cuba could sell the oil or use it to reduce imports from Venezuela.

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-By Angel Gonzalez, Dow Jones Newswires

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