Oil Rig Leaving from Cuba

HAVANA TIMES — The Scarabeo-9 rig will soon be withdrawn from Cuba after three failed attempts to find oil in exploration wells, officials said on Tuesday at the offices of the Ministry of Basic Industry, reported AP.

“The Scarabeo-9 platform will soon be out of Cuba,” said the agency in a brief statement that did not say when it might return. It is the only platform that can effectively carry out deep-water drilling in Cuban waters.

The Russian company Zarubezhneft has contracted to use a different platform to drill in shallower waters off Cayo Coco later this month.

However, “If oil remains above $100 a barrel, and if the industry continues to develop new technologies, drilling could return to Cuba for a second round…” said Jorge Pinon, an analyst at the Center for International Policy on Energy and the Environment at the University of Texas.

Three unsuccessful drilling attempts, coupled with efforts required to avoid US sanctions, will probably make many companies think twice before investing in Cuban wells, reads the news note.