Statoil Suspends Two More Rigs Offshore Norway

songa trym
Songa Trym, image via Songa Offshore

For the Transocean Spitsbergen and the Songa Trym, 2014 will end mid-November.

Due to overcapacity in Statoil’s rig portfolio, the company has decided to take these two new rigs offline for the rest of the year and possibly into 2015, according to a statement released on Thursday.  Statoil’s chief procurement officer Jon Arnt Jacobsen notes that part of the reason for early suspension is that the Spitsbergen simply finished their work far ahead of schedule.

“The exploration programme has been highly efficient. Transocean Spitsbergen drilled the last seven wells 40% faster than the industrial average in the Barents Sea. This allowed two more wells than originally planned to be drilled. We are very pleased with the work performed for us by Transocean. Unfortunately we are now in a situation of overcapacity, at the same time as the industry is facing high costs and lower profitability,” commented Jacobsen.

After Transocean Spitsbergen completes the Saturn well in the Barents Sea, the rig will cut and retrieve a wellhead in the Mercury exploration well. The job is estimated to be finished in mid-November.  On the first of the year, the Spitsbergen is planning for a brief stay in the shipyard. The rig is under contract to Statoil to the start of 3Q 2015.

The Songa Trym will be suspended after the rig has completed plugging a well on the Oseberg field in the North Sea. This job is scheduled to be completed in mid-November.

Songa Trym has delivered well on efficiency and safety, and we would have liked to use the rig also for the rest of the year. We have tried to find new assignments for the rig, but our attempts to realise the identified options have not been successful. We are now together with our partners maturing identified drilling assignments for both rigs for 2015,” says Jacobsen.

Songa Offshore notes in a statement the rig will go on 75% suspension rate (USD $279,000 per day) until the end of the year 2014.

In mid-September, Statoil announced the suspension of the COSL Pioneer drilling rig for similar reasons.

Statoil will have 13 rigs in activity on the Norwegian continental shelf following these suspensions.