Two Transocean Rigs Leaving Gulf

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Transocean, the world's largest provider of offshore drilling services, said today that two of its rigs will leave the Gulf of Mexico for work off the coast of Africa. The announcement from Transocean comes just days after rival Diamond Offshore (DO) announced one of its rigs would leave the Gulf for Vietnam.

Transocean's Discoverer Spirit will leave the Gulf for work off the coast of Liberia and Sierra Leone. Chevron (CVX), the second-largest U.S. oil company, is contracting the rig and it is expected to return to the Gulf in March 2012.

The Transocean Amirante, which is currently under contract to Eni SpA (E), Italy's largest oil company, will move to Egypt in August to work for Burullus Gas Co. The rig is currently contracted at $364,000 per day, but will see that rate fall to $247,000 per day upon moving to Egypt.

Two other Transocean rigs departed last year and nearly a third of the 30-plus deepwater rigs in the Gulf of Mexico in April 2010 will have ended up leaving due to the drilling stoppage that followed the Gulf of Mexico oil spill in April 2010, according to Reuters. Transocean (RIG) was the owner of the Deepwater Horizon rig.

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