Cyprus Energy Minister: Natural gas in Eastern Mediterranean could help EU

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In the Eastern Mediterranean, there are currently around 1,600 bcm of natural gas ready for exploitation, Minister of Energy, Yiorgos Lakkotrypis has said.
He noted that this amount could significantly contribute towards altering the sources of supply for the EU, which in 2014 consumed 400 bcm of natural gas.

In an intervention at the EU Energy Council meeting, which took place in Brussels, Lakkotrypis welcomed the acknowledgement by the European Commission in its document on the progress in creating an Energy Union, that the increasing discoveries of natural gas in the Eastern Mediterranean enhanced the ability of the region to contribute to the energy supply of the EU.

In this context, the Minister referred to the excellent cooperation and talks between Cyprus, Greece and the neighbouring third countries, noting the key role of Cyprus, which stands ready to contribute towards further promoting cooperation between the EU and the countries of the region.

Regarding the internal energy market, Lakkotrypis said that energy isolation remains a substantive problem for the regional member states, such as Cyprus, and this fact should be taken into consideration in the projected legislation the Commission will be adopting in the coming year.

The Council focused on progress in creating the Energy Union, the re-engineering of the energy market, and the new regulation on the Energy Labelling of Products. Furthermore, conclusions were adopted on the Governance Mechanism of the Energy Union.

During the working lunch, the Energy Ministers were briefed on the latest preparations for the 21st Paris Climate Conference (COP21), to be held from November 30 to December 11, 2015.