Watching the World: Near-field of dreams

To scan Bassoe Offshore Consultant Ltd.'s latest rig update for the North Sea, the upturn in drilling activity on which the UK oil and gas industry pinned its hopes during the darker days of the region's hard-fought recovery looks finally to be taking shape. The availability of semisubmersible units, for one thing, appears very much on the minds of majors and independents alike for multiwell programs during the summer drilling season.Yet this brightening picture may prove to be something of a short-term trompe l'oeil, if one is to judge by a recent report from Wood Mackenzie Consultants Ltd. The Edinburgh-based analyst says there is no doubt the UK North Sea remains a highly p...

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