Statoil Cancels Transocean Drillship Contract

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Norway’s Statoil said it has cancelled a drillship contract with Transocean six months before it was to expire, after failing to find additional work for the vessel.

“Without additional activity lined up, we unfortunately have to let the rig go prior to contract end,” said Tore Aarreberg, Statoil’s head of rig procurement.

Statoil said the vessel, Discoverer Americas, had been on contract with the company since 2009, and the contract was set to end in May. The ship has drilled deep water and ultra-deepwater prospects in Tanzania, Egypt and the Gulf of Mexico, the company said.

In the past year Statoil has suspended and canceled several rig contracts amid overcapacity, including the Songa Trym rig contract that was canceled four months early in November.

Hurt by weaker oil prices, Statoil has scaled back planned investments. It announced in June that up to 1,500 permanent jobs would be eliminated as part of a plan to cut costs by $1.7 billion.

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