The cabinet on Thursday awarded natural gas exploration rights for an offshore block to a consortium made up of ExxonMobil and Qatar Petroleum.
Energy Minister Natasa Pilides said ExxonMobil would be administering the Block 5 concession with a share of 60 per cent.
“In addition, I have been authorised to sign on behalf of the Republic of Cyprus, the exploration and production sharing contract agreed with the consortium after intense negotiations,” the minister said.
ExxonMobil and partner Qatar Petroleum plan on drilling an appraisal well in Block 10, where natural gas was discovered, towards the end of November or early December.
Based on preliminary interpretation of the well data, the discovery could represent an in-place natural gas resource of approximately 142 billion to 227bn cubic metres, the company said in 2019.
Glaucus-1 was the second of a two-well drilling programme in block 10. The first well, Delphyne-1, did not encounter commercial quantities of hydrocarbons.
Block 10 is 2,572 square kilometres and ExxonMobil holds 60 per cent interest with Qatar Petroleum owning 40 per cent.