Cyprus Awards First Production Licence
Shell, Israel’s Delek and US-based Noble Energy have been awarded a 25-year production licence for the Aphrodite gas field in Cyprus’ exclusive economic zone (EEZ), paving the way for its development.
The award is the first production contract signed by Cyprus, which is looking to exploit a raft of recent offshore gas discoveries to become a gas exporter. Identified in 2011, Aphrodite alone is thought to hold 4.1 trillion ft3 of gas.
Cypriot energy minister Yiorgos Lakkotrypis announced the award in a statement on November 7. Aphrodite is due to start production in 2025, he said, with its gas set to be pumped via pipeline to Idku in Egypt, where it will be liquefied for shipment to Europe and other international markets. Egypt and Cyprus agreed on the pipeline’s construction in September last year.
The project will generate €9.3bn ($10.3bn) in earnings over an 18-year period, according to Cypriot authorities.
Other major finds off Cyprus include the 5-8 trillion-ft3 Glaucus-1 field, made by ExxonMobil and Qatar Petroleum in February, and last year’s 6-8 trillion-ft3 Calypso discovery, made by Italy’s Eni and France's Total.
Additional resources could be found, with Cyprus continuing to offer investors new blocks for exploration. In September it brought on board Eni and Total as operators at an area adjacent to Calypso.