Wednesday October 1, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
28o C
16o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Cyprus drilling success may offer EU gas alternative to Russia

By Nikos Chrysoloras & Georgios Georgiou

Cyprus said success drilling in deep waters off the eastern Mediterranean island this year may offer Europe a way to loosen Russia’s grip on its energy supplies.

Cyprus, which has proven reserves of as much as 6 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, is looking to find another 4 trillion to 5 trillion cubic feet, Energy Minister George Lakkotrypis said. Such a discovery, about a quarter the size of Israel’s giant Leviathan find, would allow the country to proceed with plans for a liquefied natural gas terminal.

An LNG plant on Cyprus could also process gas from elsewhere in the Levant Basin, an area that may hold 122 trillion cubic feet of gas, and ship it by sea to markets in western Europe, where supplies are now threatened by the crisis in Ukraine. Russia, which provides about 15 percent of the region’s needs through Soviet-era pipelines crisscrossing its western neighbor, has threatened to cut supplies from June.

Cyprus will have “a pretty good idea” of its gas and hydrocarbon reserves within about 12 to 15 months, as companies including Eni SpA (ENI), Korea Gas Corp., and Total SA start exploration, Lakkotrypis said in an interview May 14.

Eni and Kogas will start intensive exploration within weeks in their licenses in blocs 2, 3 and 9, a campaign to last 12 to 18 months, he said. France’s Total, with licenses for blocs 10 and 11, will start exploration in the second half of next year.

Noble Energy Inc., which found proven reserves of 3.6 trillion to 6 trillion cubic feet in the Aphrodite field, will drill another well in bloc 12, Lakkotrypis said.

Noble was also responsible for the 2010 Leviathan discovery, then the world’s biggest in a decade. Cyprus last year held talks with the Houston-based explorer on the potential for taking supplies from the Israeli field for export from a Cypriot LNG plant.

An LNG plant would require upfront capital expenditure of 6 billion euros ($8.2 billion) to 10 billion euros, and Cyprus is in talks with “large financial institutions which have expressed an interest in participating,” Lakkotrypis said.

“The most pressing priority is to make another discovery,” before looking at financing options, he said in his ministry office in Nicosia. “Ultra-deep waters contain a very high risk. The probability of success is pretty low.”

Cyprus is negotiating the terms and conditions for operating an LNG plant with Noble and will make a final investment decision by 2016-2017, he said.

If sufficient gas reserves aren’t found, other options, including pipelines to existing plants in neighboring countries, are being explored. “We are not excluding anything, but the onshore plant is our No. 1 priority.”

A pipeline to Turkey isn’t an option unless the countries resolve their territorial dispute. Since 1974, when Turkey invaded the island, the country has been divided into the internationally recognized Republic of Cyprus in the south and the breakaway state in the north of the island. A new round of reunification talks has now entered a “substantive phase,” according to the United Nations.

Energy is one of the main potential growth sources for the island-nation’s economy, which is mired in deep recession, following a 10 billion-euro international bailout that came with strict austerity measures and included the imposition of losses to bank depositors. [Bloomberg]

ekathimerini.com , Monday May 19, 2014 (10:44)  
NBG Pangaea eyes listing on foreign bourse, huge portfolio
Out-of-control unpaid bills bring PPC to its knees
Banks feel optimistic ahead of stress test results
S&P upgrades OTE’s credit rating and revises outlook
Would-be commissioner Avramopoulos sets out priorities on migration
Dimitris Avramopoulos, the EU commissioner-designate for migration and home affairs, on Tuesday sought to set out his priorities for a post regarded as more crucial than ever amid increasing...
Money ring sent 4.5 mln abroad
Two Afghan employees at a currency exchange bureau in central Athens and a Greek alleged to own the establishment were detained on Tuesday in connection to the alleged illegal transfer of mo...
Inside News
SOCCER
All team sports suspended next weekend in memory of dead fan
The government announced on Monday the suspension of all team sports events in Greece scheduled for next weekend, October 4 and 5, in the memory of the Ethnikos Piraeus fan who died a few ho...
SOCCER
Karamanos punishes Michel for deeming him surplus
Atromitos forced Olympiakos’s first loss this season in all competitions on Saturday to allow PAOK to go alone on top of the Super League table on Sunday. Odds-on title favorite Olympiakos l...
Inside Sports
COMMENTARY
Next-day jitters
It is usual for Greek governments, whether one-party or coalitions (which are normally loath to actually work together), to claim that their only real challenge is dealing with the country’s...
EDITORIAL
No sweet debt deals
The lion’s share of Greece’s debt is held by European Union member states and the International Monetary Fund. A writedown of the European part of the debt would require the approval of the ...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. NBG Pangaea eyes listing on foreign bourse, huge portfolio
2. Out-of-control unpaid bills bring PPC to its knees
3. Banks feel optimistic ahead of stress test results
4. S&P upgrades OTE’s credit rating and revises outlook
5. Athens tourism fuels hotel occupancy
6. Would-be commissioner Avramopoulos sets out priorities on migration
more news
Today
This Week
1. Next-day jitters
2. Roma camp off Mesogeion Avenue set for demolition amid reactions
3. No sweet debt deals
4. Greek unemployment dips to 27 pct in June, but still highest in EU
5. Commissioner-designate Avramopoulos to face three-hour interview on EU's migration portfolio
6. Roma camp evacuation postponed; flow resumes on Mesogeion Avenue
Today
This Week
1. Greece may opt for unusual president to avoid snap polls, Venizelos says
2. Woman allegedly buried alive by accident in northern Greece
3. Salaries in Greece continue to slide, dipping 1.4 pct in Q2
4. Should you bet with Kissinger on where the world is heading?
5. Cypriots divided by 1974 war seek Shariah hub
6. The shocking thought of euro-dollar parity
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.