Israel announces major natgas deal

Could Cyprus benefit as well?

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday announced a major deal between his government and a consortium including US firm Noble Energy on natural gas production in the Mediterranean Sea.

 The agreement is aimed at ending months of uncertainty and setting a framework for the exploitation of gas discoveries that are expected to bring major new government revenue.

Political risks however remain, including a possible vote in parliament, where Netanyahu holds only a one-seat majority.

“The agreement will bring in hundreds of billions of shekels (tens of billions of dollars) to Israeli citizens over the coming years,” Netanyahu said in a televised statement, without providing details.

“I shall bring this agreement to the cabinet on Sunday. I’m sure it will pass by a large majority of votes.”