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Houston-based Noble Energy, by far the dominant operator in Israel’s nascent offshore gas boom, says it has suspended further investment, pending clarification of recent ruling by Israel’s antitrust authorities it would have to sell one of its key fields. If confirmed, Noble and its Israeli partner, the Delek Group, would be forced to sell their stakes in either the 22 tcf Leviathan or 10 tcf Tamar (see table, and map p8). With discussions on a compromise stalled, development of the giant Leviathan field will be delayed.
“As a consequence [of the December ruling], we have suspended essentially all investment in Israel…Resolution of the antitrust matter along with progress on a number of additional regulatory matters is required before we can proceed with significant further investment in Israel’s energy sector,” Noble CEO David Stover says.
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