Pride to build platform rigs for BP

Drilling contractor Pride International is in exclusive talks with BP over a contract to design, build and manage up to three major new-build platform rigs for the supermajor’s deep-water developments in the Gulf of Mexico. The self-contained drilling units would most likely go on top of BP’s planned spar platforms for the Atlantis, Holstein and Mad Dog discoveries. A source close to the deal said that Pride is in the final stretch towards clinching an award. BP would own the new rigs outright, while retaining the contractor who would manage daily operations for the life of the contract. The deal could be worth USD 200 million based on construction cost estimates. Industry players suspect that BP will require the rigs to be equipped with mechanised pipe handling from the pipe deck into the derrick in a nod to health, safety and environmental concerns. In addition, BP may ask that the rigs are zero-discharge, totally containing any waste products like drill cuttings or contaminated water. Such practices have already been implemented on BP rigs in the North Sea and the Caspian Sea.

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