LYNGBY, Denmark – Demand for jackup rigs in the North Sea shows signs of tailing off, according to Maersk Drilling.
In its third-quarter results review, the company said that at the end of 3Q, the one-year forward contract coverage for North Sea jackups declined to 40% (44%).
Offshore Norway, there appear to be limited tender opportunities for contracts starting in 2022, and demand for Norwegian jackups next year will likely prove insufficient to maintain an acceptable level of coverage for Maersk’s ultra-harsh environment fleet.
The company is now assessing alternative deployment options outside of Norway, including potential work in the UK North Sea. But from 2023 onwards, demand should return to normal with numerous subsea developments planned in shallow waters.
As for the global floater market, the one-year forward contract coverage at the end of 3Q improved to 42% (39%) and, demand should continue to increase into 2022.
But with an average marketed oversupply of 51 rigs, excess capacity remains. In certain sectors such as the US Gulf of Mexico, and assets such as 7th generation floaters, market dynamics have improved of late.