Norwegian firm Statoil ASA is ending its rig contract for the Maersk Gallant six months early.
The jack up rig has been on contract with Statoil for two years, since 21 August 2014, and since 9 October it has been sub-chartered to ConocoPhillips.
"Between 14 February and 21 August 2016 the Maersk Gallant is on a new contract with Total E&P Norge AS, who will pay cancellation fee according to the former contract," says a press statement from Statoil.
In January, Total received consent from the Petroleum Safety Authority (PSA) of Norway, to drill the North Sea exploration well 1/5-5 in PL 618 using Maersk Gallant.
The jack-up Gallant was last listed as operating in the North Sea. No information was given on the day rate or other terms for the lease. The rig has worked in the North Sea since it was commissioned in 1993.
The Maersk Gallant contract is the latest of several to be terminated by the Norwegian firm.
Since last summer, it has terminated contracts with Transocean Ltd. for the Discoverer Americas ultradeepwater drillship; Songa Offshore for the Songa Trym semisubmersible drilling rig ; and COSL Drilling Europe AS for the COSL Pioneer drilling rig.
The cancellation from Statoil comes at a time when businesses servicing the exploration and production side of the energy sector face pressures from lowered industry spending that's developed since crude oil prices started collapsing in mid-2014.