Aban Ice set to replace Badrinath

Vol 20, PW 12 (09 Mar 17) News in Brief

Tired of waiting, ONGC is seriously contemplating hiring Aban Offshore's drillship Aban Ice as the likelihood of financially-distressed GOL Offshore mobilising barge-mounted rig Badrinath appears ever remote.

This report learns that last week ONGC's drilling services group suggested hiring Aban "subject to termination" of Badrinath's contract. ONGC's Executive Purchase Committee must now decide on this proposal, which emerged after Aban agreed to match the $68,900/day quoted by GOL for Badrinath.

Aban earlier quoted $70,000/day for Aban Ice, idle off Mumbai, after her previous three-year assignment for ONGC finished on January 26. If ONGC accepts the proposal, Ice will be hired for three years and must mobilise within 180 days.

Unlucky GOL will not only lose its contract but risks an ONGC two-year ban. GOL also stands to lose a $2.7m performance bank guarantee.

When contacted, GOL said it had not heard from ONGC. GOL received ONGC's LoA on March 3, 2016 and was meant to mobilise by October 15, later extended to February 15.

Now it wants an extension till May 15.

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