IO Monthly Update - December 2015
Israel Opportunity's Latest Announcements
  • Israel Opportunity increases holdings in Pelagic Licenses
On January 5th, 2015, the Partnership has reached an addendum to the settlement agreement with the partners in "Pelagic" Licenses, Nammax, Frendum and Eden (holder of controlling interest in Frendum), and an agreement with Nammax, whereby, inter alia, the Partnership will increase its holdings in the mentioned licenses to 21%. From the date of signing the addendum to the settlement agreement, all rights, liabilities and obligations of the partners in "Pelagic" Licenses will be based on the percentage of their holdings as follows: The Partnership – 21%; Nammax Oil & Gas Limited – 63%; Frendum Investments Limited – 11%; Petroleum Services Holdings AS (formerly AGR Petroleum Services Holdings AS) – 5%
  • Energy Minister approves change in Royee License
On December 2nd, 2015, the Minister of National Infrastructures, Energy and Water Resources had approved the Partnership's request to change the boundaries of  "Royee" License, by way of transferring some areas from "Neta" License and reduction of others. The Petroleum Commissioner had accordingly announced the reduction of "Neta" License as of November 29th, 2015. The partners will remain with only one license: "Royee" License, with new boundaries.
Industry Updates
  • Leviathan development framework approved
On December 17th, 2015, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu signed a legal clause to activate the gas framework agreement. The gas framework also received cabinet approval in August and the Knesset's (The Parliament) approval in September. In light of the approval, the Energy Minister Dr. Yuval Steinitz has appointed the professional staff for implementing the framework agreement, headed by the Director General of the Energy Ministry, Mr. Shaul Meridor. The professional staff will coordinate between the different ministries for the removal of barriers and to ensure the development of Leviathan and other gas fields.
  • Energy Minister calls for Chinese companies to invest in Israel
As published by Globes Magazine, Israel and China have signed a document of understandings expanding their cooperation in energy technology research and development. Energy Minister Dr. Yuval Steinitz, who was invited to China to represent the Israeli government in a Chinese-Israeli conference on entrepreneurship and investments, has called on Chinese energy companies to invest in the energy sector in Israel and to bid for Israeli oil and gas exploration licenses.
  • Energy Minister approves first gas export deal to Egypt
According to announcements by Tamar partners, on December 23th, 2015, the partners received the Prime Minister, Energy Minister and Petroleum Commissioner's approval for the export of natural gas to Egypt. The seven-year agreement signed between the Tamar reservoir partners and Egypt’s Dolphinus Holdings Ltd. in March aims to convey 5 billion cubic meters of gas through the now defunct East Mediterranean Gas pipeline. According to the companies' publications, the supply contract includes a number of other prerequisites, namely regulatory approvals of relevant bodies in Israel and Egypt and signing of conduction agreements.
Regional Events
  • Eni to start the development of Zohr gas field
According to publications by Globes Magazine on December 27th, 2015, the Egyptian government has signed an agreement with the Italian company Eni for the development of Zohr gas field, with an investment of $ 12 billion by the company. Under the agreement, Eni, which holds 100% of the rights in the reservoir, has obligated to drill 20 wells within the next 26 months. According to Egyptian media reports, the first drilling has begun.



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