Cyprus ends tender bid to import gas from Israel’s Leviathan

As Cyprus nixed a tender bid to import gas from the Leviathan gas field, the island country may stand to benefit from Israel’s ongoing indecisiveness over the large basin’s future.

The Cypriot Natural Gas Public Company (DEFA) has elected not to extend a proposal regarding the future purchase of natural gas from Israel’s Leviathan reservoir, the basin’s shareholders reported to the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange on Sunday. At the same time, representatives of Noble Energy and the Delek Group – the main partners in both Israel’s Leviathan and Tamar reservoirs, as well as Cyprus’s Aphrodite reservoirs – are in Egypt for talks regarding gas export agreements, industry sources confirmed to The Jerusalem Post on Sunday.

“At this time, to the best knowledge of the partners, the Cypriot government is examining various options to supply natural gas to the domestic market in Cyprus, in addition to this tender, including the option of supplying natural gas from the Aphrodite reservoir in Block 12 of Cyprus,” the TASE report said.

The Leviathan partners first bid on Cyprus’s natural gas import tender in April 2014 for the supply of 0.7-0.95 of gas annually through a pipeline from Leviathan. The bidders and the Cypriot government stipulated, however, that a binding agreement would need to be reached by August 21, 2014, and would be subject to financial closings on the Leviathan project and on the pipeline connection, as well as the receipt of regulatory and tax approvals, according to information from the Delek Group.

At the 621-billion cubic meter Leviathan reservoir, about 130 km. west of Haifa, Houston-based Noble Energy owns a 39.66% stake, while Delek Group subsidiaries Delek Drilling and Avner Oil Exploration each hold 22.67% of the reservoir. Ratio Oil Exploration, meanwhile, has a 15% share.  Continue reading…

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