Within the context of reviewing the availability of new offshore oil rig jobs, ranging from some vacancies of entry-level Roustabouts and Roughnecks to high-end positions like Senior Electrician, Toolpusher, or Reservoir Engineer, to be hired by contractors, the analysts speak about the signs of Russia and the United States continuing to work together on offshore oil exploration in the Kara Sea, offshore. The Western energy giants are strengthening their relations with Russian oil & gas companies, keep signing new deals, and to invest.
So, where are new offshore oil drilling jobs are expected and where to look for the openings to come?
Thus, the American Exxon Mobil, continued the construction of the University-1 Arctic based oil well, which ExxonMobil had previously started to build together with Russia's state owned oil company "Rosneft". Once the job is done, this oil well, which has oil reserves in billions of barrels, will become the most northernmost offshore oil well in Russia. The oil reserves in this offshore oil drilling region, located in Arctic, are estimated to possibly exceed 100 billion barrels. Proceeding with realization of this Arctic oil production well drilling project means more vacancies in offshore oil production sector.
What hampers, but doesn't stop joint drilling for oil reserves in this location in the Arctic, are the economic targeted sanctions in connection with the civil war in the Eastern Ukraine. A ban has been imposed on sharing with Russia some of the contemporary advanced technologies for deep-water oil drilling. However, since the contract was signed prior to the application of the third package of the sanctions, there is no way the working on the contract could be stopped, the job should be completed regardless of the tensions arising between the USA and Russia. "It is almost impossible or at least very difficult to implement such large-scale high-tech world-class projects independently. These days commercial success determines the effective international cooperation", - said Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The western energy companies don't give up efforts to persistently dissuade the US government from keeping to adopt restrictions on Russia, claiming that companies like Rosneft, are "too big to try to punish them". At the same time, the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Exxon MobilRex Tillerson, at the insistence of the US government refused to visit the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, while another senior representative of the oil major company, Neil Duffin, did attend the event. The forum ended with Neil Duffin signing the agreement with the head of Rosneft Igor Sechin to expand joint oil production in the Arctic Ocean, as well as conducting offshore"shale oil exploration" in Siberia and cooperation in the construction of an LNG plant in Vladivostok. Along with ExxonMobil and at the same time, a British oil giant BP (holding, by the way, nearly 20% worth stake in the Russian company), also signed agreement with the Rosneft. Though classed as preliminary, the estimated $US 300 million worth agreement with Rosneft voices the intentions concerning exploration of shale oil deposits in the valley of the rivers Volga and the Urals. France's Total has also signed a deal with another Russian oil company Lukoil to take part in oil exploration on 1,000 square miles oilfield in Western Siberia.
Exxon Mobil has history of joining efforts with Rosneft in exploration, and then getting involved in oil production from Sakhalin Island. Exxon Mobil has access to offshore drilling sites in the Russian part of the Arctic Ocean, while the water near Alaska remain inaccessible due to lawsuits and regulations. Exxon and Rosneft also have valid plans to drill the first oil exploration well in the Kara Sea. It is expected that there are huge deposits of oil and gas. At the same time, the companies intend to jointly scout Bazhenov Formation in West Siberia. The other projects on the run that already provided offshore jobs on platforms and other oil production/exploration installations involve environmental geophysical studies in the Chukchi Sea, Laptev Sea, and seismic surveys within the boundaries of the Chukchi Basin Russian sector. As for the oil reserves of Kara Sea, they are assessed to be equal to the total Saudi Arabia crude deposits, and exceed those of Canada, the Gulf of Mexico, Alaska, and Brazil shelf oil reserves, as mentioned by the Internet edition BarentsObserver.com, published and maintained by Norwegian Barents Secretariat.
Another big drilling contractor that offers jobs and offshore in the connection with Kara Sea exploratory drilling is the Norwegian North-Atlantic Drilling Co, subsidiary of the Seadrill, that for this purpose has transported its West Alpha offshore rig that never did the job of drilling for oil in the Arctic or even outside Norway's North Sea sector. It takes 100 people of different trades: Drilling Engineers, Electrical Engineers, High class drillers, Offshore Crane Operator jobs, Derrickman positions, Mechanics, as well as the lower end Roughnecks, Roustabouts, Motormen etc. to service the rig that too can count to receive excellent salary due to some exceptionally harsh weather conditions. This time drilling for oil is to take place in the remote location in the Russian territorial Arctic waters. To the best of our knowledge, the employment of the crews on West Alpha semi-submersible rig assumes working on rotation schedule with 3 weeks offshore followed by 6 weeks of leave on shore, including jobs in the catering department. The offshore rig workers are to be delivered aboard the oil drilling installation from the Russian port of Murmansk, as a departure point, by a vessel, as alternative to helicopter. The name of the oil well to be drilled is University-1. The license holder is Rosneft; the operator is ExxonMobile - Rosneft joint venture. The drilling rig contracted for doing the job of the exploratory drilling is to be performed by Norway's North Atlantic Drilling company owned semi-submersible type West Alpha offshore oil rig.
Oil-drilling rig getting prepared for job in Arctic: In course of the last year, around 400 both highly skilled and unskilled, entry-level shipyard workers at the Harbor Island at Seattle were busy, welding parts, doing replacement of the old and installing new diesel engines, removing rust and old paint and re-painting metal parts of the Kulluk, another Shell owned oil rig, in order to prepare the facility for drilling for oil offshore off the Alaskan North Slope...