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South’s plan to transport LNG via Egypt not feasible

5 May 2015

Turkey’s Energy and Natural Resources Minister, Taner Yildiz has said that delivering natural gas from South Cyprus via Egypt was not feasible.

“It is said that they will bring the gas to Egypt as liquefied natural gas [LNG],” Yildiz said, during a breakfast meeting organised for economic journalists in Kayseri. “When declining oil prices and high cost of LNG are taken into consideration, I do not think that this decision is feasible for them. This decision only represents political obstinacy.” He said delivering gas through Egypt would be a deliberate decision taken so as avoid transporting natural gas via Turkey.

Anatolia News Agency

Meanwhile, Turkish daily ‘Hurriyet’ reports that Professor Volkan Ediger, director of the Centre for Energy and Sustainable Development at Kadir Has University, stated that “precious loneliness”, which has been used by the Justice and Development Party (AKP) to justify Turkey’s contentious relations with some of its neighbours, is working against the country’s energy interests, according to an energy expert.

Ediger stated the following:

“In the course of the last 10 years, southern Cyprus has signed three agreements on exclusive economic zones (EEZ) with three of its neighbours: Israel, Egypt and Lebanon. What did we do? We did almost nothing. There is no doubt that unless there is stability in the region, these energy resources will not be exploited.

Syria is at war, and there is contention between Turkey and Israel and contention between southern Cyprus and northern Cyprus. If that is the case, so long as Turkey is not in the equation, the cooperation between Israel, Egypt, southern Cyprus and Greece will not be taken too seriously.

But let’s not forget that southern Cyprus has been active on the issue. It has created a win-win situation by involving eight or nine countries. It has signed agreements with three countries; by inviting Total, it brings France into the picture, with ENI, Italy, and with Nobel, the U.S. Southern Cyprus is in an alliance with seven or eight countries.

What are the countries that we are allied to? Zero. Perhaps Turkey is counting on the fact that not much can take place in the end without Turkey being included in the picture. Perhaps. Or perhaps these are not issues we focus on.

The fact that the leaders of southern Cyprus, Greece and Egypt met [last week] is proof that we have lost our influence in the region. The Greek Cypriots have got the Israelis and the Egyptians on their side, while we are in a hostile relationship with Egypt, Israel and Syria. I guess you are alluding to precious loneliness”, he said.

Hurriyet

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