Italian contractor Saipem has secured a contract to deploy its semi-submersible rig Saipem 3 for drilling off Gabon.
The rig has been lined up to spud an exploration well in the fourth quarter at the Tortue prospect on the Harvest Natural Resources-operated Dussafu Marin permit, in which Oslo-listed Panoro has a 33.33% stake.
The probe, which is Panoro’s second off Gabon, is targeting pre-salt and post-salt reservoirs in a water depth of 116 metres at a location about 15 kilometres south-east of the Ruche discovery.
“We believe that any discovery above 10 million barrels on Tortue combined with the Ruche discovery will provide the basis for a commercial development," said Panoro chief executive Kjetil Solbraekke.
The company did not disclose the value of the rig contract.