Oil company Lundin Norway has declared its third option to extend the existing contract of the Ocean Rig-owned semi-submersible rig, Leiv Eiriksson. In addition, Ocean Rig has granted Lundin two additional options to drill further wells in the future, the driller said on Monday.As a result of these developments, the rig now has firm employment until at least the end of September of 2017 and should Lundin exercise its additional seven one-well options, currently un-declared, the rig could be employed until the first quarter of 2019, the rig owner noted.The total expected revenue backlog, including all the optional wells, is expected to be $85 million.George Economou, Chairman and CEO of Ocean Rig, commented: “We are grateful for the support of our major customer in Norway and subject to the successful restructuring look forward to extending this relationship in the long-term.”To remind, the driller at the end of March filed for Chapter 15 bankruptcy protection in a United States court amid a prolonged downturn in the offshore drilling market.Earlier on Monday, Lundin was granted a drilling permit for another Alta appraisal well to be drilled with the Leiv Eiriksson rig.The 2001-built semi-sub has been working for Lundin offshore Norway since last year. Before the contract started, the rig prepared for Barents Sea operations at Westcon Yards in Ølen, Norway.Offshore Energy Today Staff
Chelsea are in pole position to sign Pedro after Manchester United’s interest in the Barcelona winger cooled. Press Association Pedro is reportedly available for a fee of £22million, but senior figures at Old Trafford say doubts in the player’s mind over the move led United boss Louis van Gaal to end the pursuit. The Spain forward would add to Jose Mourinho’s attacking options and his potential arrival could lead to a move away from Stamford Bridge for Juan Cuadrado. Cuadrado, a January arrival from Fiorentina, has struggled to impose himself on the Blues and has been linked with a return to Italy. Chelsea have one point from their opening two games of the season and are also looking to strengthen in defence. John Stones has been the subject of a reported three failed bids, with Everton determined to hold on to the England centre back. The Blues play at West Brom on Sunday and at home to Crystal Palace on Saturday week prior to the closure of the transfer window on Tuesday, September 1, by when Mourinho will hope to have bolstered his options in attack and defence. Premier League champions Chelsea, reeling from their worst start to a season in 17 years, are understood to be interested in the Spanish forward. It is not clear how far negotiations for the 28-year-old have progressed, but United now appear to have conceded defeat in the race for his signature, handing the initiative to Chelsea.