US$45 million oil well contract for Trinidad

PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad, August 30, 2006 – The Texas-based Rowan Companies has announced a US$45 million (US$1 = $TT6) contract to drill four offshore oil wells in Trinidad and Tobago.

The Rowan Gorilla III will soon relocate to Trinidad to begin a one-year term contract. The new contract is with another operator and should extend the rig’s stay in the area by about six months to March 2008. The Company expects the new contract will generate approximately $45 million of drilling revenues.

Danny McNease, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, commented, “We are pleased to extend our work commitment in Trinidad. This contract reflects the continuing strength of the market for high-specification jack-ups throughout the world.”

Rowan Companies, Inc. is a major provider of international and domestic contract drilling services. The Company also owns and operates a manufacturing division that produces equipment for the drilling, mining and timber industries.

Earlier this month, the Canadian company, Challenger Energy Corp., confirmed that it will start a US$30 million offshore natural gas exploration in September by drilling two wells using the Chinese Kan Tan IV Semi Submersible Drilling Rig on Canadian Superior Energy Inc.’s “Intrepid” Block 5(c) offshore Trinidad. The exploration area, known as “Intrepid” Block 5(c), comprises 80,041 acres located about 60 miles (96 kilometers) off the east coast of Trinidad with water depths in the range of 500 to 1,500 feet (150 to 450 meters). The area is said to contain over four trillion cubic feet of natural gas.