Noble Reaches Agreement on Drilling Unit
Noble has reached an agreement with one of its customers regarding the situation created by the restrictions imposed on deepwater drilling in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico by the U.S. Department of the Interior. This compromise with Noble Energy defines an interim agreement on the ultra-deepwater semisubmersible drilling unit Noble Clyde Boudreaux during the period of restricted activity.
The parties have entered into a compromise agreement to replace the original drilling contract, pursuant to which the Noble Clyde Boudreaux will be placed on standby for the period from June 15, 2010 through December 12, 2010. During the standby period, which can be extended by mutual agreement of the companies, the unit will receive a daily fee of $145,000 per day. Furthermore, the companies have agreed to negotiate in good faith to enter into a new drilling contract for the unit following the standby period at a dayrate of $397,500. The parties contemplate that the term of this new contract would be equal to the remainder of the original contract term, previously expected to end in November 2011, exclusive of the standby period.
Noble also provided an update to the status of its remaining deepwater offshore drilling units operating in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico. The Noble Paul Romano, which completed its contractual commitment, and the Noble Amos Runner, for which the Company received a notice of force majeure termination from Anadarko Petroleum, which the Company is disputing, are currently idle. To date, with the exception of the notice received from Anadarko, the Company has not received any notifications from customers who have attempted to exercise their rights under force majeure clauses.
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