• Cooperation and discoveries increase prospect of significant Eastern Mediterranean gas market

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      Patrick Lavery

      Combustion Industry News Editor

The prospect of a significant increase in natural gas production in the Eastern Mediterranean has become much more likely in recent months, as the Financial Times reports. In January, energy ministers from Cyprus, Egypt, Greece, Jordan and Israel, and representatives from Italy and the Palestinian Authority agreed to launch the Eastern Mediterranean Gas Forum, aimed at developing the market, a considerable achievement in light of the strategic rivalries between some of the states. The launch followed an agreement between Cyprus and Egypt to construct a natural gas pipeline between the two countries so that offshore Cyprian gas could be transported to Egypt for liquefaction and subsequent transport. An announcement by ExxonMobil since the launch of the Forum that it had discovered additional gas reserves offshore of Cyprus, doubling the country’s reserves, has also been a boost to the area. With Israel and Egypt both having discovered reserves of their own in the last decade, cooperation between the various players could mean lower energy prices for all.