Helix announced that its Floating Production Unit, the Helix Producer I (HPI), has been contracted by BP Exploration & Production Company (BP) to assist in BP's Gulf of Mexico oil spill response operations.
The HPI will be part of BP's containment plan to capture and process oil and gas from the Macondo well and to offload such oil and gas to a tanker. The HPI is expected to support BP's efforts for a minimum of sixty days. The HPI will join two other contracting services vessels owned by Helix, the Express and Q4000, in supporting BP on the Deepwater Horizon spill response and containment operations. The Q4000 has been providing services to BP since the beginning of May.
As a result of the HPI's involvement in the BP spill response, production from Helix ESG's Phoenix deepwater oil field will be deferred until the HPI comes off hire with BP. Helix ESG expects the financial contribution from the BP HPI contract will offset the financial impact from deferred production of the Phoenix oilfield. The Phoenix oil field, located in the Gulf of Mexico's Green Canyon block 237, is ready to commence production upon HPI's return to the site, with all necessary U.S. Coast Guard and Minerals Management Service permits and approvals in place.
Gulf of Mexico Operations Update
Currently Helix ESG's operations in the Gulf of Mexico are not impacted by the U.S. Department of Interior's industry-wide deepwater drilling moratorium. The company has no plans to drill additional oil or gas wells in 2010. Four of Helix's Contracting Services vessels are currently operating in the Gulf of Mexico; subsea construction vessels Intrepid, Express, and Caesar, and the multipurpose intervention vessel Q4000. Generally, these assets have contracted backlog of durations ranging from three to six months for work unaffected by restrictions imposed by the moratorium. The balance of Helix ESG's well intervention and ROV support vessel fleet is presently operating outside of the Gulf of Mexico. As such, Helix ESG does not expect the moratorium to have a significant financial impact on its Contracting Services business in 2010.
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