Noble Corp. has swapped in a rig for Petronas, after the previous contracted semi-submersible has gone to Colombia under another deal.
Noble said the Noble Voyager would go to Block 52, in Suriname, for one well. The drillship will begin working in Suriname in February this year, with an estimated duration of 120 days.
The contract has a day rate of $470,000, Noble said, with an option for another well.
Petronas drilled the Roystonelea-1 well on Block 52 last year, announcing success in November. The Malaysian company is the operator with a 50% stake, while ExxonMobil has the remaining 50%.
The Noble Voyager recently completed work for Shell in Mauritania. It then moved to the Port of Spain, in Trinidad and Tobago, to begin preparing for work in Suriname.
“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,” said Noble vice president Blake Denton.
“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.”
Petronas had been due to use the semi-submersible Noble Discoverer for the Suriname work. This rig was under contract with Petronas until October last year. It then went to Ecopetrol in Colombia, under a contract that ran until January 2024.
Ecopetrol drilled the Orca Norte-1 well, in a bid to find deepwater gas for domestic consumption. The company has not reported on results as yet.
According to Marine Traffic, the Noble Discoverer is currently offshore Colombia.
On December 20, Noble reported the Discoverer had won work in Colombia with Petrobras International. The contract will run for 400 days, it said, starting in the second quarter of this year. It has an option to extend by 390 days.
Denton said the deal would see Noble “build further on the Discoverer’s already announced presence in Colombia, which is one of the South American basins that is now coming back with exciting prospects”.
Suriname regulator Staatsolie said in December that the Block 52 partners had made “significant progress” with an oil discovery at Roystonea-1.
Staatsolie went on to say Petronas was “very enthusiastic about this and will undertake more activities in 2024 in an attempt to further develop this”. The regulator has also held talks with the company on developing gas discoveries in the area, based on the Sloanea well.
Petronas also gained access to two more blocks in the Suriname deepwater licence round. In December, it signed the contracts for Block 63 and – alongside TotalEnergies and QatarEnergy – Block 64. Petronas also has stakes in Block 53 and 48.