Atwood Gets Notice from Customer of Force Majeure in Egypt

(Dow Jones Newswires), Feb. 1, 2011

Atwood Oceanics said it has received a force majeure notice from one of its customers because of the civil unrest in Egypt.

The international drilling contractor said RWE Dea Nile GmbH notified it that the situation in Egypt is affecting the operations of its Atwood Aurora rig operating in the Mediterranean Sea offshore of Egypt. Force majeure is a contractual clause that allows for different terms in the event of an uncontrollable event.

Atwood said it has secured the well and is in the process of halting offshore operations. It noted that provisions of the drilling contract outline a day rate of 70% of the current operating rate of $133,000 during the first 15 days of a force majeure event. After that, 50% of the operating rate will apply, up to the end of the event or contract termination, whichever comes first. The contract can be terminated by either party after a 30 days of a force majeure event.

Civil unrest has flared in Egypt as its citizens protest the country's ruling regime, with hundreds of thousands filing into Cairo's Tahrir Square on Tuesday--the biggest crowd yet in eight days of demonstrations.

Copyright (c) 2011 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

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