The former Frigstad Kristiansand, now Bluewhale II, nears delivery and is currently on sea trials. The 7th generation Frigstad D90 design 12,000ft wd rated semi is now owned by CIMC Bluewhale Rig Ltd and is set for delivery at the end of this month. No charter has yet been announced for the rig.
Another Chinese owned semi-sub, COSL’s Hai Yang Shi You 982, under construction at Dalian Shipyard, is also nearing delivery, scheduled for early 2018. The harsh environment Agility GG5000 design rig is currently having its thrusters installed which will be followed by sea trials. The 5,000ft wd rated rig is DP3 capable with accommodation for 180 crew is expected to work for CNOOC in the South China Sea when delivered.
Transocean’s latest UDW drillship Deepwater Pontus has now departed from DSME’s yard in South Korea and is en route to the Gulf of Mexico where it will commence its maiden 10-year charter with Shell late in Q4 this year.
During their second quarter results report Sembcorp Marine suggested that a number of new potential customers had emerged interested in acquiring its abandoned new builds. Apart from five jackups they also have the UDW semi West Rigel which has been rumoured to have interested Transocean. Meanwhile Transocean has requested the yard restart construction of the two Jurong Espadon III design UDW drillships they ordered back in 2014. There was however no news on the six Sete Brasil UDW drillships on which work has been suspended.
Sonangol has extended their contracts with Vantage for the construction management of the two UDW drillships, Libongas and Quenguela, that are under construction at DSME in South Korea. The contracts have been extended to Q2 and Q3 2018 which suggests the new delivery date for the rigs will be another year beyond the current delivery dates of June and September this year. The original delivery dates were back in 2015 but Sonangol are reluctant to accept delivery until they have signed contracts for the rigs which would facilitate financing of the final payments due to DSME. Vantage also have a contract with DSME to provide preservation management services for two stacked drillships on which construction is virtually complete. DSME have eight UDW drillships under construction, one for Transocean, two for Atwood, two for Seadrill and the Cobalt Explorer besides the two Sonangol units.