Nexen Inc. says that, as a result of issues arising from the moratorium in the Gulf of Mexico, it has signed an amended agreement with Ensco regarding the ENSCO 8502, an ultra-deepwater semi-submersible drilling rig. Under the amended agreement, Nexen is entitled to a special rate until such time as the rig is mobilized to the first drilling location designated by Nexen.
"We are pleased that the moratorium in the Gulf of Mexico has been lifted and we are looking forward to getting back to work here," said Marvin Romanow, Nexen's President and Chief Executive Officer. "We have submitted applications for permits to drill our near-term exploration prospects and are waiting on approvals. As we await these approvals, our estimated cost for non-productive time ranges from $15 million to less than $40 million assuming we are able to commence drilling later this year or at the beginning of the second quarter 2011. We are actively pursuing opportunities to further reduce this cost."