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Energy minister hints at gas find

Energy Minister

Energy Minister Giorgos Lakkotrypis said on Friday the results of an ongoing exploratory natural gas drill off the island’s coast were encouraging but more time was needed because of the morphology of the seabed.

“I won’t get into the details. They (results) are very encouraging, a reserve has been located but he morphology of the particular target is complicated so we need more time,” Lakkotrypis said after briefing President Nicos Anastasiades.

The drill is being carried out by Italy’s ENI in a field named Kalypso in block six of Cyprus exclusive economic zone (EEZ)

The government had said it would be making announcements between the two rounds of the presidential elections but according to the minister it will take a bit more time for work to be completed.

Lakkotrypis said announcements could be made next week.

“We are two days before the elections and don’t want it to be seen that we are trying to build expectations,” he said.

Pressed by reporters, the minister said the geology in the area was similar to the Zohr field, discovered in 2015 by ENI in neigbouring Egypt, described as the largest ever natural gas find in the Mediterranean Sea.

“I won’t talk about quantities or anything else,” he said.

Total and Italy’s ENI had won the concession for block six, while ENI alone was awarded block eight. Total and ENI have also joined forces in block 11.

ExxonMobil-Qatar Petroleum consortium was awarded block 10.

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