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    West Africa: increase in rig count will drive up rates for PSVs

    News // June 13, 2014

    Broker Chart Shipping says May 2014 saw some dramatic rig fixtures that will impact on the Africa OSV market in the near future.

    Total concluded two long term deals on drillships, with Seadrill's newbuild West Jupiter fixed for five years in Nigeria, whilst Ocean Rig won a six year contract for their Ocean Rig Skyros in Angola.

    Angola also saw a number of new rig charters commencing towards the end of the month, with Stena Carron starting its three year contract with Statoil whilst Ocean Rig Athena kicked off its own three year contract with ConocoPhillips. The latter will be
    supported by three Tidewater PSVs, Gammage Tide (5,000 dwt), Burch Williams (4,617 dwt) and Brewster Tide (3,300 dwt).

    "With the drillship activity strong, there has been increased fixing activity, which prompted rates on both medium and large PSVs to trend up, despite average availability also creeping up from 3.75 in April to 4.2 in May," the broker said.

    "The average fixing level for a medium sized PSV was US$23,750 in May, up US$1,000 from April, whilst the big PSVs also saw a US$1,000 increment on the previous month, to put the average fixing number at US$34,000."

    As an illustration of the increase in fixing activity, medium sized PSVs Seabulk Africa, Bourbon Kiesse, Asso Ventune, Brewster Tide, Topaz Xara and Topaz Seema secured charters of varying duration, whilst in the large PSVs, in addition to Gammage Tide and Burch Williams mentioned above, Swire fixed Pacific Leader away, Maersk was said to have fixed Maersk Fetcher. Additionally, Tidewater found employment for Gerrard Tide and Lundstrom Tide.

    "With the drillship count set to rise further, we can expect rates on modern PSV tonnage to at least maintain their current levels, if not rise further," said Chart Shipping.


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