A Chinese Drilling Fleet on loan to Sudan for exploratory off-shore drilling.

A Drilling fleet is a civil fleet composed of Drillships and various support vessels. The Drilling fleets were a primarily Chinese innovation, used by the Chinese National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC). China's Drilling fleets provided a distinct advantage to China in the oil market. China would loan Drilling fleets to partner nations in exchange for exclusive rights to a portion of the oil recovered. This deal was beneficial to the oil producing nations since they would not need to build or buy oil rigs, and China could remove the drillships once the oil deposit was expended or if the relationship with the oil producing nation became unstable.


Nan Hai Tiao Zhan, China's first Semi-submersible drilling platform.