Salamander secures rigs for offshore Thailand drilling projects

Offshore staff

LONDON – Salamander Energy expects to take delivery of the jackup Ensco-53 on March 24 for a drilling program on the B8/38 license in the Gulf of Thailand. The rig arrived late due to weather downtime and slippage in the previous operator’s campaign.

Salamander plans two development and two exploration wells, with the development wells being drilled first to benefit from current oil prices. Exploration drilling should follow in May.

The company has also contracted Atwood Oceanics’ jackup Atwood Mako for work across its licenses in the Greater Bualuang area.

Atwood Mako is a new rig under construction in Singapore which should be delivered in September. It is designed for drilling in water depths of up to 400 ft (122 m) and drilling depths of 30,000 ft (9,144 m).

Salamander has contracted the rig initially for 12 months, extendable by up to a further 12 months. The company says this arrangement provides greater certainty in the timing of its planned drilling activity in the Gulf of Thailand and also flexibility in selecting development, appraisal, or exploration locations.

It is currently looking for the rig to drill 16 development wells from the Bravo wellhead platform in the main field and the East Terrace, and to drill exploration wells on the G4/50 license.

James Menzies, CEO of Salamander, said: “Following our farm in to block G4/50 surrounding our Bualuang production license area, we are now in a position to take on drilling rigs under long-term contract to explore, appraise, and exploit our expanded acreage base in the Gulf of Thailand.

“The signing of this long-term drilling contract is a significant step forward for the Group in its plans to unlock the material upside in the Greater Bualuang area. We can now plan our operations with greater certainty and avoid the traditional frustration of rig delays.”

3/22/2012

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