Shell considers pumping Cypriot, Israeli gas to Egypt, Bloomberg reports

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By Stelios Orphanides

Royal Dutch Shell Plc said it is considering buying natural gas from Israel’s Leviathan field and market it together with gas from Aphrodite, turning the eastern Mediterranean into a major gas producing hub that would include production in Egypt, Bloomberg News reported on Monday without citing its source.

The output from Leviathan and Aphrodite would then be pumped to liquefaction plants in Egypt while some Cypriot gas could also be sold locally, Bloomberg reported.

Talks on diverting some of Aphrodite’s gas to the island, it said, are at an early stage.

The Houston-based Noble Energy Inc., which almost six years ago announced the Aphrodite discovery, and its Israeli Delek Drilling LP, Noble’s partner in both Cyprus and Israel, are estimated to need up to $3.8bn (€3.2bn) to develop the required shipment infrastructure, Bloomberg reported. Upgrading the capacity to deal with Shell could further increase the amount. Shell’s involvement in Aphrodite resulted following the acquisition of British Gas (BG).

Cyprus has unsuccessfully attempted several times over the past 7 years to allow its state-owned power producing company Electricity Authority of Cyprus switch to natural gas. Last month, a consortium of France’s energy company Total and Italy’s Eni started exploratory drilling in block 11 of Cyprus’s EEZ, close to the spot in Egypt’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ) where the Italian firm made a mammoth discovery in 2015.

Following the latest failure early last year, the state-owned natural gas company Defa, announced a new tender less than a year ago.

The inclusion of Egypt’s Zohr, the 30 trillion cubic feet (tcf) gas discovery in the Arab nation’s EEZ, which dwarves Aphrodite’s 4.5 tcf and is roughly double the size of Leviathan, expected to start production in two years, could create a gas production centre at Europe’s doorstep, in an area of geopolitical tensions, Bloomberg reported.

Noble remains in talks to pump production to Egypt for both domestic consumption and re-export via its liquefaction plants, which could accommodate production from both Leviathan and Aphrodite, Bloomberg reported citing a Noble Energy spokeswoman.

The full report is available here.

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About Author

Stelios Orphanides is a journalist at CyprusBusinessMail.com. To contact Stelios Orphanides: [email protected]

  • Cydee

    Oh. so we don’t have enough of our own; never mind. Mix it together with some from ‘next door’ and pretend all that ‘investment’ was worth it….

    • Arnt Otto Østlie

      ??

      • AnalogMind

        She is expressing despair to the fact that Turkey is no longer needed as an NG gatekeeper to Europe.

    • Gregos Winston

      If there wasn’t enough, Turkey wouldn’t be sitting in a boat watching and weeping in the distance.

  • Douglas

    The big next boom is on the horizon ,gas prices will be reduced the Government will have more revenue to develop a electrified train lines for commuters and cargo,new duel carriage way to Polis,new Coral Bay Mariner,the list is endless 🙂

  • Did shell really say HUB ?

  • AnalogMind

    It makes sense. The energy triangle of Israel-Egypt -Cyprus taking advantage of undrused Egyptian gas liquefaction capacity to export LNG to Europe.

  • Gregos Winston

    Very good. Press ahead, regardless of the empty threats from the derranged sultan wannabe in Ankara.

  • AKi77

    So, that means bye-bye to Israel – Turkey gas pipeline.

  • Mike

    The North African oil and gas fields and terminals have had the infrastructure to produce, store, pump and distribute hydrocarbons for decades so utilising their network makes perfect sense. Whether or not politicians see that as a vote winner or loser and thereby promote or veto the proposal is another matter. At the end of the day squandering a few tens of billions of taxpayers money on unnecessary spending is no problem as long as political power is maintained or regained. I’m pretty sure large profits from local legal advice, corporate support and bilatteral agreements will compensate for any embarrasing questioning by taxpayers representatives.

  • HighTide

    The usual “hubby” excitement without any real basis. Aphrodite would first have to prepare for extraction and would then only supply 10% of what Egypt has. Whether this is worthwhile to be piped across is questionable. How to get the whole shebang commercially viable to Europe is another issue. Let’s talk again in 2-3 years.