In close collaboration with the operator, third party suppliers and the integrated drilling service contractor the first Integrated Drilling Project in Kuwait started in March 2016. The project is being treated as a pilot to assess the value integration can bring to the operator by providing the expertise, new technology and processes for managing drilling risks and improving performance. The project scope includes the provision of all services, engineering and supervision for the well construction process under a lump sum model. The project had an original target start date of June 2016, a year after the contract award. However, in the current challenging oil and gas industry environment, coupled with the operator's ambitious plans to increase oil production, the requirement for drilling more wells to provide the necessary increase in oil output meant that an early start would help in accelerating oil production from the Sabriyah and Raudhatain fields. From the onset, the target was set for exceeding client expectations. It required a very detailed planning approach to avoid potential short-sighted risks that could lead to costly delays. This paper describes the success case of advanced planning of a fully integrated approach.

Three primary challenges were identified for the early startup, i.e. drilling rigs readiness, personnel and processes. For the drilling rigs readiness, the main issue was the utilisation of an interim rig requiring major equipment overhaul, including engines, top drive, mud pumps and drawwork, followed by an audit and certification. A specialised and dedicated team was mobilized to manage this operation successfully, and better support the rig contractor, including a rig contractor manager, rig managers, electricians and mechanics. Key project team members were brought in ahead of time, through careful selection to ensure the right competencies, according to the technical complexities and contract requirements. The team in place focused on implementing processes to accommodate operational and engineering optimizations as well as new technologies which could be applied from the first well, in order to improve well contruction cycle and deliver more wells in shorter time to the operator. This required collaboration from both teams including the integrated drilling service contractor and the operator. For ensuring the project readiness, a thorough process assessment was followed for each of the established milestones in the schedule. These assessments covered different functional areas including HSE, engineering, drilling services, third party providers, resources allocation and technology review including cost versus benefit analysis.

In result, close collaboration and hard work of integrated team including operator, third party suppliers and integrated drilling service contractor, enabled successful project start-up. The drilling operations commenced three months ahead of plan, exceeding expectations of all project stakeholders.

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