ONGC to stop hiring older rigs under new policy

Vol 20, PW 21 (13 Jul 17) People & Policy

Shelf Drilling, Jagson, Aban and Paragon Offshore will be panicking at the thought of a new oil ministry driven policy banning ONGC from hiring old offshore rigs built before 2004.

This month (July) ONGC's drilling department in Mumbai sent a detailed 'note' or recommendation to director technology and field services Shashi Shanker listing 100 advantages of hiring offshore rigs built after 2004. "Shanker sent the note to the oil ministry," confirms a source.

Also listed are 120 disadvantages of older rigs, chief among them the fact they experience more downtime than more modern jack-ups. During an executive committee meeting on April 10, ONGC chairman DK Sarraf noted that ONGC's rigs, which are on average more than 35-years old, spend 16.7% of their time sitting idle against the global average of 10%.

"Rigs might be on a downtime rate even when not working," we hear. "But other services (logging, vessels) are not; ONGC pays even if no work is done." Shelf rigs off India are CE Thornton, built 1974; FG McClintock, built 1975; J.

T. Angel, built 1982; Trident-II, built 1977; Trident-XII, built 1982; Parameswara, built 1983; and Galveston Key, built 1978.

Likewise Jagson's Deepsea Fortune and Deepsea Fossil, both built 1982; and Deepsea Matdrill, built 1981. Paragon's L-786 (Noble Kenneth Delaney) was built 1983; L-1112 (Noble Ed Holt) in 1981 and M1161 (Noble Charlie Yester) in 1980.