Noble set to declare Cyprus natural gas find viable

Noble Energy is expected to declare its Aphrodite natural gas reserve off Cyprus commercially viable within weeks, Cyprus’s energy minister said on Tuesday.

The move would allow Cyprus to export gas, Energy Minister Giorgos Lakkotrypis told reporters.

“This is very important for Cyprus because it will be the first time we go beyond the phase of hydrocarbons exploration to development and exploitation,» Lakkotrypis said after a meeting with Noble executives and Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades.

“This sends a message to foreign buyers that we have natural gas to sell,» Lakkotrypis said.

Cyprus discovered offshore gas in 2011 and is seeking to develop the energy sector to bolster an economy that relies mostly on tourism, business services and shipping.

Noble is the only company licensed by Cyprus to have made a discovery to date, with an estimated 4.54 trillion cubic feet in its Aphrodite field.