IO Monthly Update - July 2016
Israel Opportunity's Latest Announcements
- Israel and Cyprus agreed to cooperate over Ishai and Aphrodite gas fields
According to announcements by the Prime Minister's office, in a meeting held July 24th, 2016, Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the President of Cyprus Nicos Anastasiades discussed the arrangements for Aphrodite and Ishai gas fields' development and decided that the ministers of energy of both states will act to complete discussions by September 2016. According to recent publications by the Ministry of Natural Infrastructure, Energy and Water Resources, Aphrodite reservoir / Ishai License on the Israeli side contain estimated reserves of 7-10 BCM in 2C classification (in accordance to work done by the ministry and not by the license's partners). The aforementioned follows the announcement from November 19th, 2015, whereby the Aphrodite gas field, that is partly located within Ishai License, was declared a discovery by the Petroleum Commissioner, as defined by the Petroleum Law.
- Noble Energy sales 3% working interest in Tamar field
On July 5th, 2016, Noble Energy announced the sale of a 3% working interest in the Tamar field offshore Israel for $369 million to Harel Group, an Israeli insurance provider and pension manager, in partnership with Israel Infrastructure Fund, Israel’s largest infrastructure private equity fund. The sale comes as Noble reduces its working interest in Tamar by 11% from 36% down to 25% as part of Israel’s approved Natural Gas Regulatory Framework. Noble expects to sell the remaining 7-8% working interest in the project over the next 36 months.
- Lebanon to put offshore blocks up for bidding
According to publications in the Lebanese media on July 9th, 2016, Lebanon is expected to offer all of its 10 offshore blocks for bidding to international oil companies, following an agreement between two main political parties. On March 2013 Lebanon started a pre-qualification procedure for gas companies to enter the country. 12 international operators have passed the early stage of the procedure, together with 34 non operators, but regulatory and political instability led to the postponement. It is reasonable to assume that the recent findings of gas reserves in Egypt, as well as the reconciliation agreement between Israel and Turkey, have caused the Lebanese Ministry of Energy to accelerate the bidding process.
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