IO Monthly Update - August 2016
- Petroleum Council announces the distribution of new oil and gas exploration licenses
In a decision published by the Ministry of National Infrastructures, Energy and Water Resources on August 9th, 2016, the Petroleum Council approves the distribution of oil and gas exploration licenses in a tender procedure for 24 blocks in Israel's economic waters. The council recommends re-opening the areas as presented by the Petroleum Commissioner and to offer them for a semi-competitive licensing round. "The council chose 24 blocks as to which the seismic and geological data indicate a high potential for promising geological structures," thus according to a statement by the Ministry.
*Source: The Ministry of National Infrastructures, Energy and Water Resources
- Energean to buy Tanin and Karish gas fields
On August 16th, 2016, Delek Group announced that a contract was signed between the partners in the licenses, Delek, Avner and Noble Energy, and the Cypriot energy company, Energean Oil & Gas, for the sale of Tanin and Karish gas fields for $148.5 million, in accordance with the Gas framework agreement. According to Globes Magazine, Energean is engaged in gas and oil exploration and production in the Adriatic, and Eastern Mediterranean, mainly in Greece and Egypt, and has previously been involved in Israel as the operating partner in the Sara and Myra licenses.
- Egypt Issues New International Oil and Gas Bid Rounds
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.
- Egypt and Cyprus sign a deal for gas transfers via pipeline
According to publications by Reuters on August 31st, 2016, an agreement was signed between the two countries for the transport of Cypriot natural gas to offshore and onshore installations in Egypt. The deal was signed in the Cypriot capital Nicosia by Egyptian petroleum minister Tarek El Molla and Cypriot energy minister Yiorgios Lakkotrypis. The governments of the two countries also decided to speed up talks on an agreement regarding the construction of a pipeline linking Cyprus with Egypt.
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