Remarks by the Minister of Energy at the signing ceremony for the Exploration and Production Sharing Contracts for Blocks 6 and 8 of the EEZ of Cyprus

With today’s signing of the Exploration and Production Sharing Contracts, as well as the Hydrocarbons Exploration Licenses, for Blocks 6 and 8 in the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of Cyprus, the 3rd Licensing Round is officially concluded. The Republic of Cyprus, by exercising its sovereign rights, continues unabated to implement its strategy for advancing the exploration and exploitation of its offshore wealth.

It is with great pleasure, therefore, that we welcome to Cyprus the Executive Vice President of Eni for Southern Europe, Mr Carlo Vito Russo, the Vice President of Exploration in the Middle East and North Africa of Total S.A., Mrs Eleanor Rowley, and all their associates.

Following yesterday’s signing of the Contract for Block 10, we have signed today two new Contracts with companies that are already our valued partners in the EEZ of Cyprus. Their continued commitment, despite the challenges faced by the global oil and gas industry, allows us to be optimistic for the prospects of our hydrocarbon resources.

I note that the consortium of Eni Cyprus Limited and Total E and P Cyprus B.V. is licensed for Block 6, while Eni Cyprus Limited for Block 8.

Both companies possess extensive expertise in the field of hydrocarbons, as well as experience in the Eastern Mediterranean, and by submitting ambitious applications in the 3rd Licensing Round they have opted to further strengthen their presence in our EEZ and, consequently, in the wider region. Of particular significance for the quality of their exploration programmes is the fact that they join forces in Block 6, a strategic move they have also made recently in Block 11.

As we conclude today the final chapter of the 3rd Licensing Round for offshore hydrocarbons exploration, I would like to thank for their dedication and hard work, my two colleagues the Ministers of Finance and Labour, the members of our Negotiating Team, the Advisory Committee and the technocrats at the Ministry of Energy entrusted with matters pertaining to hydrocarbons. We have all put in a huge effort lasting more than a year, and, I am positive, we have been extremely successful.

I also wish to wholeheartedly thank the representatives of Eni and Total for their very productive participation in the process and, of course, for the important vote of confidence they continue to cast in the EEZ of the Republic of Cyprus.

To commemorate today’s signing ceremony, we have decided to present each company with a copper effigy of the ancient ship of Kyrenia.

Given our common goal for fruitful and effective cooperation, aiming at the optimal exploitation of the underwater wealth in Cyprus’ EEZ, we feel that it is a fitting gift as it carries with it many connotations. The ancient ship of Kyrenia, a cultural and historic treasure of Cyprus, was salvaged from the depths of the Cypriot sea, whilst copper was once one of the greatest sources of wealth on our island.

Source: Press and Information Office