Israel reaches major gas deal
TEL AVIV, August 13, 2015 – US exploration and production company Noble Energy stands to benefit from a landmark Israeli natural gas deal. Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced Thursday that an agreement had been reached to enable the continued development of the country’s largest gasfield, Leviathan.
The deal, which also involves Israeli conglomerate Delek Group, also covers the development of two other offshore assets in the Mediterranean Sea, including the large Tamar field. The two companies will be expected to invest around $1.5 billion in the Leviathan alone over the next two years. Together Leviathan and Tamar hold the majority of Israel’s natural gas reserves at about 821 bcm (29 tcf).
“I shall bring this agreement to the Cabinet on Sunday. I’m sure it will pass by a large majority of votes,” Netanyahu said at a press conference.
There has been much domestic opposition to the arrangement, including from the country’s Antitrust Authority and Security Cabinet, which sought to approach the issue as a matter of national security due to Noble Energy’s export agreements with Egypt, Jordan and Palestine.
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