-- Abu Dhabi oil firm awards deal to Italy's Snamprogetti The Abu Dhabi Co. for Onshore Oil Operations has awarded Italy's Snamprogetti SPA a $320 million engineering, procurement, and construction contract for enhancing production at Bu Hasa oil field 200 km southwest of Abu Dhabi, reported OPEC News Agency.
-- US drilling activity slips to 1,092 active rigs US drilling activity slipped this week, down by 3 rotary rigs to 1,092 still active, officials at Baker Hughes Inc. reported Friday. There were 852 rigs working in the US and its waters during the same period a year ago.
-- InterOil contracts rig for Sterling Mustang prospect in Papua New Guinea Toronto-based InterOil Corp. has accelerated its drilling program in an extensive oil exploration program on Papua New Guinea and the surrounding region. The company contracted Simmons Rig #3, a conventional oil rig that is being mobilized to commence drilling on Sterling Mustang prospect in October.
-- Talisman flows first oil from PM-3 CAA Phases 2, 3 off Malaysia-Viet Nam Talisman Malaysia Ltd., a unit of Calgary-based Talisman Energy Inc. and operator of Block PM-3 in the overlapping Commercial Arrangement Area (CAA) off Malaysia-Viet Nam, has begun Phases 2 & 3 production of oil from the block. Oil volumes are expected to peak in early 2004.
-- BG, partners approved to expand Panna-Mukta, Tapti fields off India BG Group PLC and partners Oil & Natural Gas Corp. Ltd. and Reliance Industries Ltd., have received approval from India to begin a $138 million project to enhance the production of Panna-Mukta and Tapti fields off western India. The key fields contribute 7% to India's total oil and gas production.
-- Refuge management The Department of the Interior's US Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) needs to better manage oil and natural gas activities within its national wildlife refuge system, the General Accounting Office said recently.
-- Gulf of Mexico demand down by 5 offshore rigs this week The number of mobile offshore rigs under contract in the US sector of the Gulf of Mexico fell by 5 this week to a total of 120 out of the 171 units available for work, dropping the fleet utilization rate to 70.2% in those waters, said officials Friday at ODS-Petrodata, Houston.
-- US gas drilling, production surge no threat to prices At what point does drilling for natural gas become the driving factor in gas markets?
Let's set aside the issues of weather and storage that have dominated discussion of gas markets in recent months.
Market-watchers now are turning their attention to a continuing rise in the Baker Hughes Inc. count of active rotary rigsespecially those drilling for gas. And there are preliminary reports of a slight uptick in US production this year.
-- Ziff: Western Canada field costs continue climbing Western Canada's operating costs at oil and natural gas fields continue to rise, meaning that reducing operating costs is the quickest value lever for producers, said Ziff Energy Group, Calgary.
-- US House passes tar sands leasing bill The US House of Representatives Wednesday passed by voice vote an oil industry-supported measure sponsored by Rep. Chris Cannon (R-Utah) that aims to remove regulatory uncertainty surrounding tar sands leasing on federal lands.