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Keppel delivers first semisub in 14 years to Azerbaijan

HEYDAR ALIYEV Semi.JPG
The first semi-submersible rig (semisub) to be built in Singapore over the last 14 years for drilling offshore Azerbaijan is nearing delivery.

THE first semi-submersible rig (semisub) to be built in Singapore over the last 14 years for drilling offshore Azerbaijan is nearing delivery.

The semisub has arrived in Singapore-based yard group Keppel Offshore & Marine's (O&M) subsidiary Caspian Shipyard Company (CSC).

CSC is on track to deliver the semisub to Caspian Drilling Company Ltd (CDC), a subsidiary of the State Oil Company of Azerbaijan Republic (SOCAR), Keppel O&M said after trading close on Thursday.

This delivery by a Singapore-based yard group to Azerbaijan comes 14 years after Keppel O&M delivered the first semisub, Maersk Explorer, to the Caspian country back in 2003.

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Delivering the columns of the semisub built in Singapore was an engineering feat of its own as the structures had to be transported through the narrow Volga-Don canal to reach Baku in Azerbaijan.

The Business Times understands that the rig will undergo modification before its final delivery to fit the purpose of a contract in the offing for its owner, CDC.

Shielded by a reportedly low per barrel production cost of US$20, upstream oil and gas projects off Azerbajian remain economical even at US$50 per barrel oil prices.

CDC is understood to be nailing down the details for potentially a long-term charter with an oil major.

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