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The newbuild cycle continues to bring new rigs into both the marine and land markets, but lately the land market has felt the first brush of overbuilding. The ReedHycalog Rig Census (see World Oil, October 2007) tabulated the expansion across the offshore mobile rig market and the international land market, including the US and Canada where resource plays in shale gas and coalbed methane have led to very active drilling over the past few years. Rig use is softening, but the number of rigs on order remains strong. The census shows that the US rig fleet expanded to 2,817 rigs, the highest it has been since the late 1980s.
Baker Hughes, Inc. released its most recent count, showing 3,124 rigs operating across the globe. This is down six rigs from October 2006-essentially flat. In their international market tally, BHI counted 1,024 rigs, a 59-rig increase from last year.
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