KCA DEUTAG Celebrates 10 Years of Operations in Azerbaijan

KCA DEUTAG recently celebrated 10 years of drilling operations on BP-operated Azerbaijan International Operating Company's (AIOC) Chirag platform, offshore Azerbaijan. More than 50 personnel from BP Azerbaijan management, SOCAR (State Oil Company of Azerbaijan Republic), the Azerbaijani Oil Academy and AIOC shareholder companies' management attended a reception held on 5 November in Baku, to commemorate this milestone.

Brian Taylor, KCA DEUTAG's Director, Northern Business Unit, commented: "KCA DEUTAG's activities in Azerbaijan over the last 10 years have proved immensely challenging and rewarding. Our commitment to the Caspian region and in particular to the development of the BP-operated Azeri-Chirag-Guneshli (ACG) and Shah Deniz projects offshore Azerbaijan has seen us recruit, train and develop more than 500 Azerbaijani national employees, many of whom we hope will go on to become leading members of the country's oil and gas community and role models for others in the industry.

"I would like to thank everyone who has contributed to the success of KCA DEUTAG's operations in Azerbaijan over the last 10 years and we look forward to working with our clients and SOCAR for many years to come, and to helping develop a long-term sustainable capability in Azerbaijan."

Mike Skitmore, BP Vice-President Operations, Azerbaijan, said: "I would like to express my sincere thanks to all of the KCA DEUTAG personnel who have contributed to the development of the ACG and Shah Deniz projects over the past ten years. It is a tremendous achievement to have ramped up from fewer than 100 people in 2000 to over 700 people today, and delivered an exceptional safety record along the way. This is a direct result of the clear safety message that is conveyed from the top of the organisation, and carried down through all of the ranks."

KCA DEUTAG's long and successful involvement in Azerbaijan's oil and gas industry began in 1995 when it secured its first platform drilling contract in the region with AIOC on its Chirag field. The initial phase of the contract involved the conversion of the KCA DEUTAG Rig T-105 from a landrig into an offshore platform rig.

This 'Early Oil Project' was followed by the Azeri-Chirag-Guneshli (ACG) series of platforms and subsequently saw KCA DEUTAG's appointment as the engineering contractor for all four platforms – the Central, West and East Azeri and the ACG Phase 3 Deep Water Guneshli project. In addition BP awarded KCA DEUTAG in 2002 the detailed design contract for the Shah Deniz drilling facilities for installation on a Technip TPG 500 jackup rig.

Building on these engineering contracts, KCA DEUTAG competitively tendered for, and won the major drilling contracts for Central, West and East Azeri and Shah Deniz platforms.

KCA DEUTAG is currently the main drilling contractor on six platform rigs offshore Azerbaijan, for which it has contracts until at least 2010 and in some cases, 2012.