ENI Drillship Offshore’s Cyprus likely to leave ‘for time being’

Italian oil major ENI hinted on Thursday they were backing out of Cyprus’ offshore block 3 for the time being, while Turkey again served notice that, absent a comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus problem, it would not allow Greek Cypriots to ‘unilaterally’ exploit oil and gas resources around the island.
Speaking on the sidelines of an event in Milan, ENI’s CEO Claudio Descalzi said it was “very likely” the drillship contracted by his company would have to be moved to a new location – possibly Morocco – in coming days.
“Then we’ll come back, waiting for international, European, Turkish, Greek and Cypriot diplomacy to find a solution,” he said.

Italian oil major ENI hinted on Thursday they were backing out of Cyprus’ offshore block 3 for the time being, while Turkey again served notice that, absent a comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus problem, it would not allow Greek Cypriots to ‘unilaterally’ exploit oil and gas resources around the island.
Speaking on the sidelines of an event in Milan, ENI’s CEO Claudio Descalzi said it was “very likely” the drillship contracted by his company would have to be moved to a new location – possibly Morocco – in coming days.
“Then we’ll come back, waiting for international, European, Turkish, Greek and Cypriot diplomacy to find a solution,” he said.

But this did not mean ENI were relinquishing their interests in the area.
“We’re used to having potential disputes … we did not pull out of Libya or other countries where there were complicated situations,” Descalzi said.
His remarks come two weeks into a standoff in block 3 of Cyprus’ Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) after Turkish warships, ostensibly participating in naval wargames, interdicted a rig while en route to drill an exploratory gas well.
Due to the Turkish blockade, the Saipem 12000 drillship, contracted by ENI, has since been immobilized at a distance of some 50km from the drilling site dubbed Cuttlefish.
Other than the interrupted drilling at the Cuttlefish site, ENI are contractually obligated to drill two more exploratory wells in any of their concessions in blocks 2, 3 and 9.
The blocks in question are disputed by the Turkish side, which claims they form part of the breakaway regime’s own ‘EEZ’.
Turkey does not recognize the Republic of Cyprus, nor therefore that Greek Cypriots are entitled to an EEZ or a continental shelf.

Source: Cyprus Mail