Petrobras to Issue Tender Details for 28 Rigs Next Week

RIO DE JANEIRO (Dow Jones), Oct. 7, 2009

Brazilian state-run oil company Petrobras (PBR) plans to issue tender details next week for 28 deep-sea and ultra deep-sea drilling rigs, Guilherme Estrella, director for exploration and production, said Wednesday.

Estrella said the first eight rigs would be contracted for Petrobras ownership and exclusive use, while the other 20 would be freighted to other companies.

Renato Duque, director for Petrobras services, said local content in the rigs would be an important consideration. The first two rigs would require 20% Brazilian-supplied equipment and materials, rising to 50% for rigs number six and seven.

Duque said foreign content, especially in drilling equipment, was currently 100%.

Petrobras also wanted to raise the presence of Brazilian engineering in its projects at all levels, from macro to micro levels, he said.

Estrella gave no ballpark figure price for the rigs and said the market would decide.

Delivery for the first seven rigs would be within 48 months and the other 21 within 40 months.

Estrella said the decision to order such a large number of rigs was to provide economies of scale for any new shipyards.

Estrella also said the market for deep and ultra-deep rigs was currently "tight" and there had been no recent price reductions despite the global economic crisis.  

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