MOU advances Cyprus LNG export prospects

The Republic of Cyprus and Total E&P Cyprus BV have signed a memorandum of understanding furthering prospects for LNG exports from the island.

This follows the award in February to Total of production-sharing contracts for Blocks 10 and 11 in the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of Cyprus (OGJ Online, Feb. 6, 2013).

The agreement, said the joint announcement, “records the support” of Total for monetization of potential natural gas reserves in the area through a “variety of options giving priority” to liquefaction and LNG export to European and Asian markets.

Specifically, the two parties will cooperate on the feasibility of an onshore LNG plant to be built at Vasilikos, Cyprus.

In June 2012, the Republic of Cyprus decided to begin work toward the LNG plant at Vasilikos, which will have initial export capacity of 5 million tonnes/year (tpy), expandable to 15 million tpy (OGJ, Apr. 5, 2010, p. 62)

In its decision in December 2012, the Council of Ministers assigned to the Cypriot National Hydrocarbons Co. continuation of negotiations with Noble Energy International Ltd. regarding specific agreements for the supply of natural gas to Cyprus from Block 12 and for establishing the LNG plant.

Noble leads groups that have discovered deepwater Aphrodite gas field off Cyprus and several fields in Israeli waters nearby, including giant deepwater Leviathan field, considered a candidate for development linked to an LNG project.

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