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    North Sea market picked up in October, says broker

    Contracts, Tenders and Rates // November 26, 2004
    Offshore Shipbrokers Ltd (OSL) in Aberdeen says the spot market in October "got off to a slow start" with rates for both AHTS and PSVs hovering around the £5,000-£6,000 level, but things picked up as the month went on, with weatherplaying a part and causing rates to rise to around the £15,000-£16,000 level by the middle of the month.

    The end of the month however saw a dramatic rise in both AHTS and PSV rates as the four month Norwegian strike on rigs and platforms finally came to an end.

    OSL said this caused rates for AHTS to reach a high of £35,000 with PSVs not far behind reaching around the £20,000 level.

    "Owner's confidence has remained high into the beginning of November but this time with the PSV market being the tighter of the two. A number of AHTS have been fixed at around the £25,000 level but cargo runs have so far peaked at around the £32,000 level," said OSL in its latest monthly report.

    "Looking ahead towards the end of the year, the market looks to remain reasonably tight with a number of term requirements remaining outstanding for November and December commencements. This will draw several vessels away from the spot market though someof these requirements are against existing vessels. The rig market is the main driving force behind this upturn and as oil companies continue to undertake drilling operations during this traditionally quiet time of year we expect to see vessel rates remaining reasonably good for owners," said OSL.

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