ENERGY: Cyprus sees East Med Gas Forum becoming an international body

Cyprus Energy Minister George Lakkotrypis said the East Med Gas Forum (EMGF), comprising of seven countries, will meet in June to seek agreement on becoming an international organisation.

The Minister said that he hopes the Forum consisting of Egypt, Cyprus, Greece, Italy, Israel, Jordan, and the Palestinian Territories, will transform itself into an international organization.

Lakkotrypis added that the forum was necessary in order for East Med gas to be competitive and that the member states were discussing issues as the preferred infrastructure for the optimal exploitation of that wealth.

He told the 9th Nicosia Economic Congress that the region faced many challenges and that was one of the reasons the US and EU supported the EMGF as observers.

Cyprus and the region are becoming major players in the oil and gas industry, especially after Egypt’s huge Zohr gas discovery and the recent significant find offshore Cyprus by ExxonMobil in block 10.

The East Med in general and Cyprus were at the centre of discussions at CERAWeek in Huston for the oil and gas industry.

Lakkotrypis said his Ministry was working hard to create the relevant gas infrastructure, such as a new port at Vasiliko, to enable companies to use Cyprus as a base to provide services for the oil and gas industry.

In his presentation, Lead Country Manager of ExxonMobil Varnavas Theodosiou spoke of the importance of the discovery in block 10 with estimated quantities between 5-8 tcf of natural gas, saying that additional evaluation of data was needed before deciding further exploration in the block.

He said ExxonMobil’s activities in the region, mainly in block’s offshore Crete and in block 3 offshore Egypt, in close proximity to Cyprus, bring additional synergies into the projects.

We look forward to kick-off the activities in that area in the very near future, he said.

On commercialisation options for block 10, Theodosiou said the elite case for ExxonMobil was an LNG plant in Cyprus, in case they could find or pull together additional gas quantities to make the project feasible.

Source: The Financial Mirror