The Saipem 10000 drillship has this week reached Cypriot waters, where it will begin drilling operations on behalf of Eni/KOGAS joint venture.
According to Cyprus’ media, the country’s energy minister Yiorgos Lakkotrypis will today arrive aboard the drillship, and will stay there until the drill bit reaches the seabed, marking the start of the drilling operations.
Eni last year signed Exploration and Production Sharing Contracts with Cyprus, for Blocks 2, 3 and 9 located in the Cypriot deep offshore portion of the Levantine basin, which encompass an area of around 12,530 square kilometres, thus marking the entry of Eni in the country.
The drillship is currently deployed at the Block 9, where it will spud the Onasagoras prospect, hoping to strike natural gas. Results are expected in about 80 days, the minister tweeted on his personal Twitter account on Tuesday night.
— Γιώργος Λακκοτρύπης (@GLakkotrypis) September 23, 2014
Eni was awarded the three blocks whilst leading a consortium formed by Eni (80%, as operator) and the Korean company Kogas (20%) in an international competitive tender (Cyprus 2nd Offshore Licensing Round) which was completed in May 2012.
The oil & gas industry has recently shown significant interest to the Levantine Basin as it is one of the newest exploration frontiers with giant gas potential.