Leviathan: Stranded Between Low Prices And Anti-Netanyahu Backlash?

US operator Noble hopes to sanction Israel’s 22 tcf Leviathan field by end-2016. It is prepared to consider a scaled-back project to get things moving. Israeli regulatory problems are clearing. But the key hurdle – a lack of sales deal – remains.

Ken Fisher, Executive VP and CFO of US firm Noble Energy, which operates Israel’s two key gas finds, says that “I would expect probably by late 2016” the company will sanction development of the 22 tcf Leviathan field and Phase II expansion of 10 tcf Tamar.

But both projects are reliant on sales deals beyond Israel. And so far none of a sheaf of MOUs signed over the past two years has been firmed up. A thicket of Israeli regulatory problems may have cleared in recent months. But without sales the projects are going nowhere.


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