Statoil has awarded rig contracts for exploration drilling in the Santos basin in Brazil to Seadrill.
The contracts given by its Brazilian subsidiary Statoil Brasil Oleo e Gas is for the BM-S-8 license which contains parts of the 2012-Carcará oil discovery.
Seadrill’s scope of the fixed contract has an exploration well and a drill stem test, which Statoil says are included in the license commitments of the exploration phase.
Commencement date for the contracts is planned between 1 December 2017 and 1 March 2018.
As per the terms, Seadrill Offshore will provide the West Saturn drillship, while Seadrill Serviços de Petroleo will handle services on board. Both the companies are subsidiaries of the Bermuda-based deepwater drilling contractor Seadrill.
Built in 2014, the West Saturn ultra-deepwater drillship can drill in water depths of up to 12,000ft and will be upgraded with a managed pressure drilling system ahead of the exploration work with Statoil.
The contracts are slated to begin between 1 December and 1 March 2018.
According to Seadrill, the backlog for the firm portion of the contract is likely to be around $26m.
As per the contract terms, Statoil plans to drill the independent Guanxuma prospect after which it will carry out a drill stem test on the Carcará discovery.
Statoil Brazil country manager Anders Opedal said: “Testing the Carcará discovery will provide important information for developing the field. In addition, Statoil is evaluating its options for the Northern open area licensing round, expected in October 2017.
“We believe Statoil is well-positioned for future operatorship of a unitised Carcará field.”
The contracts given to Seadrill also feature options for seven more exploration wells apart from the firm program. Statoil may exercise the options subject to the results of the firm exploration program and could deploy the West Saturn drillship for its Brazilian assets.
Image: The West Saturn drillship. Photo: courtesy of Seadrill.