Rig operator Valaris has been chosen to carry out the drilling contract for Neptune Energy’s Seagull project in the UK North Sea.
The Rowan Gorilla VI jack-up will drill four wells for the development which is thought to hold 50 million barrels of reserves.
The value of the deal, expected to last 18 months starting in the third quarter of next year, has not been disclosed.
First oil from Seagull, which will be tied back to BP’s ETAP processing facility around 10 miles away, is expected by the end of 2021.
The central North Sea field is expected to produce around 50,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day over its 10-year lifespan.
Neptune Energy is operator with a 35% stake while BP holds 50% and JAPEX has 15%.
UK managing director of Neptune, Pete Jones, said: “This is an important milestone for the Seagull project and a further demonstration of how the development is progressing at pace, following the award of the SPS and SURF contract to TechnipFMC in July.
“Seagull is a very positive example of what our industry is working hard to achieve in terms of MER UK; the project partners have embraced a collaborative, commercially-innovative approach and extended the life of operating assets through the use of existing infrastructure in order to maximise recovery of North Sea hydrocarbons.”