Cyprus and a US-Israeli partnership on Wednesday signed a statement of intent for the development of a natural gas liquefaction plant on the island. The parties are the Cyprus state, Noble Energy International, and Israel’s Delek Drilling and Avner Oil Exploration Limited Partnership. It is hoped the preliminary accord will lead to a final agreement in the future setting up a joint venture between the parties – a special-purpose vehicle seeking investors for the estimated €7 to €8bn LNG plant.
“The signing of the memorandum between the Republic of Cyprus and the three companies represents the next milestone on the road map for the exploitation of indigenous gas reserves in Cyprus’ Exclusive Economic Zone,” Minister of Commerce and Industry Giorgos Lakkotrypis said addressing the official ceremony which took place at the Filoxenia conference centre, in Nicosia.
The LNG plant will be built at Vasilikos.
He also said that the LNG plant will constitute “the fundamental and necessary infrastructure that will allow for the export of Cypriot natural gas to the European and global markets”.
Addressing the event, head of US Noble Energy John Tomich said the agreement constitutes an important milestone for the cooperation of the Republic with its partners adding that it will lead to the full development of natural gas reserves to be found in block 12.
Speaking on behalf of Delek Drilling and Avner Oil Exploration Gideon Tadmor said the MoU demonstrates the government’s and the three companies’ commitment to go ahead with the construction of the LNG plant.
US and Israeli Ambassadors in Nicosia John Koening and Michael Harari were also present at the event.