Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Israel-Turkey pipeline hangs on Cyprus peace talks- A Fail Benefits Russia


A behind the scenes peek into some wranglings over resource control. Share some thoughts?

The greatest beneficiary of a failure in Geneva would be Russia and its efforts to further expand its widening strategic footprint in the Eastern Mediterranean.

"Israel hopes to market its natural gas to Turkey, and via Turkey to the EU, but this aim may hang on the outcome of the potentially historic Cypriot peace negotiations currently underway in Geneva. Since an undersea gas pipeline from Israel’s Leviathan natural gas field to Turkey requires crossing Cyprus’s economic exclusion zone, failure to reach an agreement could force Israel to return to an older plan of marketing its natural gas via Egypt. However, in the new energy and geopolitical realities of the region that emerged in 2016, Israel’s selection of Egypt as its major export option could result in the Russia’s rise as a central player in Eastern Mediterranean energy.

The divided island of Cyprus has a “once in a generation” opportunity to resolve the conflict and unite the island. Greek Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades and his Turkish counterpart Mustafa Akinci have worked assiduously toward an enduring solution, narrowing the gap between the two sides on the most vexing issues blocking reunification. The current talks between the parties in Geneva will turn into an international conference on January 12 to include the three guarantor powers – Turkey, Greece, and the United Kingdom – for the first time since 1960.
 I was surprised to even see the UK’s role as a guarantor power mentioned in JP. There role has been mentioned her previously, but the media, always portrays this as a power struggle between two parties only Greece and Turkey. Usually omitting the UK’s role.

 It’s  also being reported that the UK is willing to give up some of it’s territory which includes farmland- But don’t touch our military bases used to bomb Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria! Is Britain generous offer being made to insure success of the peace talks, simultaneously blocking Russia's massive market moves?

Daily Mail

However, while Greek and Turkish Cypriot positions are closer than ever before, there has emerged a widening gap between their guarantors in Athens and Ankara. The attempt to arrive at a settlement at this singularly exceptional moment could falter on Greece and Turkey’s failure to agree on the issue of guarantees.

The greatest beneficiary of a failure in Geneva would be Russia and its efforts to further expand its widening strategic footprint in the Eastern Mediterranean.

With international attention during 2016 focused on Russia’s pivotal role in the Syrian peace process, many have missed Russia’s strategic advance farther south in the eastern Mediterranean. Moscow’s late 2016 gains have come via two major energy deals concluded with Cairo, agreements that deepen Russo-Egyptian ties in a manner that affects the strategic interests of both Israel and Turkey.

On December 12, 2016, the Italian energy giant Eni agreed to sell a 30% stake in the Zohr natural gas field off Egypt’s coast to Russia’s Rosneft for US$1.575 billion.
I know my anonymous commenter is aware of this news... pretty sure you mentioned it?

The largest gas find in the Eastern Mediterranean, Egypt’s Zohr field contains 850 billion cubic centimeters of natural gas, 36% more than Israel’s Leviathan field. Rosneft will become the second largest stakeholder in Zohr, which is expected to start producing gas by late 2017. Moscow also maintains an option to buy an additional 5% share in the field.

While most of the gas produced at Zohr is slated for Egypt’s domestic market, natural gas from Zohr or neighboring suppliers such as Israel and Cyprus can now supply Egypt’s dormant liquefied natural gas (LNG) plants, potentially rendering Egypt again into a net natural gas exporter. If Egypt became an LNG supplier to Europe, it could undercut the importance of Turkey’s Trans-Anatolian Pipeline (TANAP), which, as the main pipeline of the Southern Gas Corridor extending from Azerbaijan to Greece, Albania, and Italy, is designated to transport natural gas from the Caspian Sea to the EU.

While the EU regards the Southern Gas Corridor as a transit corridor to reduce its critical dependency on Russia for its natural gas imports, Ankara’s ambition is also to use TANAP to become an energy hub for the distribution of natural gas from the Caspian Basin and Middle East to Europe. To thwart these developments, Russia has sought a role in developing and marketing Eastern Mediterranean gas, including repeated Russian overtures to Israel to partner in the development of Israel’s gas industry.

Moscow’s breakthrough in the region came via Cairo and not Jerusalem. After the December 12 agreement for Rosneft’s purchase of a 30% share in the Zohr field, Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi’s office highlighted the new level of Russo-Egyptian cooperation stating: “The president reaffirmed Egypt’s commitment to cooperate with Russian companies in all spheres, including [the] oil and gas sector[s], taking into account the immense experience and potential of Russian companies.”

The gas deal came on the heels of the November 19, 2016 agreement between Cairo and Moscow for Russia’s state-owned nuclear energy company Rosatom to build Egypt’s first nuclear power plant in Dabaa on Egypt’s Mediterranean coast. Scheduled for completion in 2022, the additional electricity produced by the Dabaa plant could reduce Egypt’s need to generate electricity from natural gas for its own domestic market thereby making more gas available for LNG exports to Europe.
Nuclear power for Egypt.

Although Turkey constitutes Israel’s most commercially viable natural gas market, a failure in Geneva would lead Israel and the Republic of Cyprus government in south Cyprus, which controls the Aphrodite offshore gas field, to look for alternative ways to export natural gas to Europe. Both countries desperately need to secure a stable export market in order to finance the development of their gas industries. In this circumstance, Russia would have a strong strategic interest to incentivize Israel and the government in south Cyprus to export gas via Egypt in order to gain greater influence over non-Russian supply sources and routes to the EU natural gas market.

The future pattern of energy relations in the Eastern Mediterranean awaits the outcome in Geneva.
Interesting, no? 

From Earlier:


  1. Israel key concern at this stage has to be the lebanon energy auctions following the un vote and the follow on truck attack in Jerusalem. Russia and greecce have been taklikg pipeline deal just like the Russia south Korea annd north Korea pipe (recalling the Israel bombing of the ez-zor alleged nuke facility around the time of the dead Russians washing up in hatay (another dead Russian in Greece days ago). Israel was just in azerbijan after that story about a Israel pow wow in the trump town with azeris noting their similar threats. Still similar? Nothing a Kurd pipe and kirkuk interconnect couldn't help. Though Iraq looks to be trying to bury the hatchet with turkey for a unnited front on anti pkk as Israeli media talking about turkey bogged down in albab.

    1. Gazpromm mmed buyins including the tamar offtake deal we targeting the lng market of which the us was backing the cyprus lng plant at the tie in spite of turkey cost efficiency.


      Yes this chart is somewhere here linked...

    3. Also discussed here the Sinai assassination campaigns esclating into border attacks. Bleed them?



      US forced into the press release on more turkish troop coordination following the Russian airstrike on al bab and the B52 hit?

    6. More Dav obfuscation

    7. I saw there press release on coordination with the Turks but, when i read through it was clear the release was more smoke and mirrors as it was admitted the offer of more cooperation hadn't made it to the political higher ups

    8. Davuto─člu: is he saving face? Never trusted him

      He's the one who told the world it was the Turks that had shot the Russian jet down..

      "Davuto─člu said it was not possible for a prime minister, a chief of General Staff or an air force commander to know which soldier executed the rules, resulting in him refusing to make an explanation about the rules of engagement, which are set by the government."

      I'm pretty sure an air force commander would be aware which soldier executed the rules and would also know what the rules of engagement are..


    9. anonymous: I recall the chart and the mention of killings in the sinai

  2. Hi Penny Happy New Year! Cyprus, the strange looking island that appears in every single news story about Syria, just sitting to the left of the map, nameless, subliminal! Funny how it is always so important to the powers that be yet they like us all to forget about it!

    There will never be satisfactory peace settlement for Cyprus just like there will never be for Palestinian/Israel. This is the crux... I believe they all know this,the Guarantor powers. The status quo suited them fine when Turkey was on side, not so much now!

    There are supposed to be vast quantities of gas on the Cypriot e EEZ but where is it? Perhaps because this was a ruse?

    I'm wondering what they will do now?


    1. Marie:

      "The status quo suited them fine when Turkey was on side, not so much now!"

      Interesting, not sure how you mean this but I got thinking about how important this all is to Israel also..

      Then Turkey not being on side.. is this because of the deal with Russia and the very obvious fall out between Turkey and NATO
      Would you clarify please and thanks?!
      And happy new year to you too- glad your still around.

  3. I forgot to mention that the Daily Mail is breaking international law using that map. The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus is not recognised. There is no North and South, just occupied north! Perhaps I am being sensitive... This is what I mean about there never being a peaceful settlement!!

    1. I understand what your saying- It's one of those situations where there is no way everyone is going to be happy

  4. Something heartwarming for once:

    1. Thank You Ally :)

      It's good to be reminded that there are good people aplenty willing to take that little extra step of kindness at a time of need.

      Just over a year ago we lost out pet cat, she was over 19 years old and I still miss her to this day..

      It was nice to see cats get the same respect as dogs- here in Canada (to my mind) people revere dogs, over cats and sometimes other humans, sadly.
      That was very heartwarming