|The Songa Enabler drilling rig. (Photo: Songa Offshore)|
The suspension will apply from completion of a production drilling campaign on the Snøhvit field, which is estimated to the end of November.
The rig will be suspended for a period of around four months, pending start-up of an exploration campaign in the Barents Sea. Statoil plans to drill 5-7 exploration wells in this area in 2017.
Efforts are further being made to mature other tasks that may involve the rig.
Songa Enabler is a newly constructed Category D rig that was ordered by Statoil in 2012. Statoil subleased the first five years to the Johan Castberg licence. The rig was delivered in 2016.
The Johan Castberg partners have previously decided to spend more time on maturing the Johan Castberg project. According to the current plan the project is being matured until a decision is made in 2016 whether to continue the project (DG2).
If the partners decide a final investment decision for the project (DG3) in 2017, the drilling campaign is scheduled for start-up on the field in the second half of 2019.