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Energy minister stepping down by end of month – reports

Energy Minister Giorgos Lakkotrypis rumoured to be stepping down after his trip to Israel on June 23

Reports on Wednesday were rife that Energy Minister Giorgos Lakkotrypis would be stepping down from his post within weeks.

The rumours have been circulating since March, but many news websites suggested a formal announcement was to be made after cabinet’s session on Wednesday, though no statement has yet been made.

The reports said Lakkotrypis may be leaving by the end of the month and would be going to the private sector with his successor possibly announced after the official visit to Israel set to take place on June 23.

Lakkotrypis will accompany the ministers of foreign, defence, the deputy minister for tourism and President Nicos Anastasiades to discuss issues related to their respective ministries.

In comments to CyBC on Tuesday, Lakkotrypis said the meeting to Israel may yield answers over the cross-border exploitation of the Aphrodite gas field.

A part of Aphrodite’s gas lies within Israel’s exclusive economic zone. Since the gas in the neighbouring Yishai prospect, on the Israeli side, is part of a single geological reservoir, its production depends on agreements between the two countries.

“In the beginning of May we sent our revised proposal on resolving this difference and we expect the comments from the Israelis,” he said.

“We expect an initial response while we are in Israel. At the moment we have three discoveries. Aphrodite, Glafcos and Calypso. Each one ties the companies to the Cypriot EEZ.”

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