Aker Drilling Confirms Rig Contract with Aker Exploration

On Thursday Aker Drilling ASA entered into a final, three-year contract with the offshore exploration company Aker Exploration AS for drilling operations on the Norwegian Continental Shelf.

Aker Exploration AS has confirmed a contract for the company's drilling unit, which is scheduled to be operational in October 2008.

"This is an important contract featuring exciting exploration assignments on the Norwegian Continental Shelf," said Aker Drilling President and CEO Geir Atle Sjoberg. "Aker Drilling's sixth-generation, semi-submersible Aker H-6e unit is tailor-made for Norwegian conditions. We will cover the customer's needs for exploration wells anywhere on the Shelf, including deep waters and northern zones. We are contributing to increased exploration activity in Norway."

The day rate for the three-year contract period is USD 520,000. The possible total contract value amounts to approximately USD 610 million, or about NOK 3.8 billion. The contract includes a total of USD 41 million in reservation payments, mobilization costs, and customer-specific modifications. Aker Exploration has an option to extend the agreement for an additional two years.

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