Offshore drilling contractor Noble Corporation has been awarded a long-term extension for the ultra-deepwater drillship ‘Noble Tom Madden’ from American oil major ExxonMobil.

Noble said it secured approximately 6.5 years of additional contract term under the ‘commercial enabling agreement’ with ExxonMobil for work in Guyana waters.

The ultra-deepwater drillship was previously contracted until mid-February 2024 and the latest additional term will extend the rig contract to mid-August 2030.

According to the drilling contractor, the rig day rate will be updated at least twice a year and is subject to a ‘scale-based’ discount, as well as performance bonus under the commercial enabling agreement.

The agreement also provides ExxonMobil with the flexibility to transfer between other Noble drillships namely Noble Tom Madden, Noble Don Taylor, Noble Bob Douglas, and Noble Sam Croft.

Noble Corporation president and CEO Robert W Eifler said: “We are extremely pleased to further our relationship with ExxonMobil and their partners offshore Guyana.

“This award demonstrates the capability of the Commercial Enabling Agreement to align the interests of Noble and ExxonMobil while continuing our participation in one of the world’s premier offshore exploration and development opportunities and supports additional investment by Noble in local content.”

In September last year, ExxonMobil discovered oil on the Stabroek Block located offshore Guyana at the Tripletail-1 well in the Turbot area.