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Cyprus' energy minister says a consortium composed of energy companies Total of France and Eni of Italy has been licensed to explore for natural gas deposits in another area off Cyprus' southern coast.
Georgios Lakkotrypis says the two companies have an equal share in a new block into which a gas deposit that Eni discovered in an adjacent block last year is believed to extend.
Discovered resources globally of conventional oil and natural gas surpassed 4.5 billion barrels of oil equivalent in the first half of 2018, making for an exciting recovery with Guyana leading the way, according to analysis by Rystad Energy. Average monthly discovered volumes are 826 million barrels of oil equivalent. This is a 30% increase from 2017.
The increased US naval presence in the Eastern Mediterranean until the end of the month is seen as an indication of the concern triggered by Turkey's recent hostility in the region, which last month led to the suspension of Italian energy company Eni's drilling operations in Block 3 of Cyprus's exclusive economic zone (EEZ).