Cyprus Offshore Exploration

Cyprus Offshore Exploration

OilTurkish President Erdogan is trying to pressure oils companies that are drilling by hydrocarbon resources off EU member Cyprus was unacceptable while excluding Ankara.

In 1974 Turkish forces invaded Northern Cyprus in response to a coup aimed at uniting the island with Greece. The Turkish-populated northern part of the island then declared the breakaway Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), which is recognized only by Ankara. UN-backed efforts to reunify the island have so far come to nothing.

Exxon Mobil, ENI and Total to name a few of the Energy giants have all committed to energy drilling off Cyprus, in defiance of warning from Erdogan.

In a statement made by Erdogan: Those who thought they could take steps in the Eastern Mediterranean or the Aegean in defiance of Turkey have now begun to understand what a big mistake they were making.

“It is absolutely unacceptable to usurp the natural resources of the eastern Mediterranean while excluding Turkey and the TRNC,” he added.

With the commissioning of a new Turkish warship Erdogan is trying to make a stand against exploiting the resources of the Eastern Mediterranean region without the approval of Ankara, calling them “bandits of the sea” would face the similar response as its foes in Syria.

Analysts are warning the situation could become extremely combustible with the risk that one false move could lead to a major confrontation.

Last February a drill ship contracted by ENI to explore off Cyprus had to abandon its mission after Turkish warships blocked its path.

Cyprus last month invited ENI, Exxon Mobil and Total to bid for unclaimed block 7 in Cyprus Exclusive Economic Zone. Block 10 has already been licensed to Exxon Mobil and Qatar Petroleum.

In 2011 Noble Energy a Texas-based company made the first discovery off Cyprus in the Aphrodite block estimated to contain around 4.5 trillion cubic feet of gas.

The discovery of nearby Egypt’s huge Zohr offshore reservoir in 2015 has brought hopes that Cypriot waters are holding further riches.

With the wealth laying under the seafloor bed Turkey is trying to claim its share. Even though invading Cyprus in 1974 doesn’t give Ankara any rights nor claims over the discovery in Cyprus.

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