Expect flood of bids in 5-rig tender from ONGC

Vol 18, PW 18 (07 May 15) Exploration & Production

Expect a flood of bids in ONGC's tender to hire five jack-ups on three-year contracts.

“A lot of rigs are on the market,” one likely bidder tells us. “Oil prices will stay low for some time so rig rates will stay low too.

This tender is good for anyone who wants to lock into a long-term contract.” ONGC is planning a pre-bid on May 22 with price and technical bids submitted by June 22.

Issued on April 24, ONGC's tender asks for two jack-ups of Baker Marine Class, Levingston or Marathon LeTourneau design and three slot-design jack-ups. All must be equipped to operate in 300-feet water depths.

Likely bidders include Shelf, Deepwater, Jindal, Aban Offshore, Greatship, Jagson, Noble, Ensco, Saipem, Rowan and others. Drillers tell us ONGC can expect rates of around $60-65,000/day - well below the $76-80,000/day it received following its 12-jack-up tender in 2014.

In this tender one slot jack-up and two in the other category are carried over from the unmet 2014 requirement. ONGC was unable to tender for these earlier because of a case filed against it in the Delhi High Court by Jindal over the decision to scrap Category-IV of the 2014 tender where Jindal was sole valid bidder.

At the last hearing on April 17, judges removed the rig tender ban on ONGC and granted both sides an adjournment until September 11.

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