The Canadian Association of Oilwell Drilling Contractors anticipates a continued decline in the size of the Canadian fleet in 2010, due to equipment moving internationally and retiring. CAODC forecasts an average 800-rig fleet, down from 862 in the first Quarter 2009 and 840 in the fourth. The fleet peaked in December 2007 at 902 rigs.
On the other hand, average active rig count is expected to increase a bit, to 218 in 2010, a 4% change, up from 209 in 2009. Further, drilling days will increase bay about 4,000 to 78,480. Most of the increase, CAODC says, will be in the third quarter, with further slight pick up in the fourth quarter.
Only 40% of the fleet will be employed during the winter drilling season in the first quarter. An overall 27% utilization is expected next year.
“This will be the third year of sub-economic conditions, and at 27% is very close to the previous all-time low observed in 1992,” CAODC says.
The forecast assumes $5.50/Mcf gas and $70 oil. Activity levels are expected to be strongest in British Columbia and Saskatchewan.