Cyprus announced on Wednesday that between two and three trillion cubic feet (Tcf) of natural gas has been uncovered in exploratory drilling in block six of the nation’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ).
The find by the consortium of Italy’s Eni and France’s TotalEnergies in the Zeus-1 area of the block is 162km from Cyprus’ coast, and at a depth of 2,300 meters.
It is the third consecutive discovery in Block 6 and “confirms the promising outlook for the area and its development”, Eni said.
The consortium in August reported an estimated 2.5 trillion cubic feet discovery in the Cronos-1 well in Block 6.
It also reported a discovery in Calypso-1 in the same block in 2018.
Cyprus welcomes new discovery of gas
Energy Minister Natasa Pilides welcomed the latest find as she told Alpha that each such discovery strengthens Cyprus’ prospects for developing the gas fields, particularly considering the current European energy crisis.
She noted, however, that confirmatory searches are set to take place in due course.
Cyprus has licensed several blocks rimming its southern coast. It reported its first natural gas discovery in 2011, though it has yet to enter production.
The exploration program is hotly disputed by Turkey, which invaded and still occupies Cyprus’s northern third in 1974.
Ankara cites overlapping jurisdictions either on its own continental shelf or in the waters of the breakaway Turkish Cypriot state in north Cyprus, which is recognized only by Turkey.
Cyprus’s government, which represents the whole island, dismisses those claims.