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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 12-05-06

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>


  • [01] Gas deposits could help Cyprus` ties with neighbours
  • [02] Government strengthens policies on family life
  • [03] AEL FC wins first division championship

  • [01] Gas deposits could help Cyprus` ties with neighbours

    Noble Energy believes that natural gas deposits in Cyprus' exclusive economic zone could help develop good relations with its neighbours, pointing out that these deposits far exceed Cyprus' needs and can be exported abroad.

    Speaking at the Cyprus-US Commerce Chamber's Annual Award Dinner where Noble Energy, its Chairman and CEO Charles Davidson were awarded the 2012 Distinguished Merit Award, Davidson referred to Noble's recent success in the Eastern Mediterranean, where 35 trillion cubic metres of natural gas have been discovered, in Cyprus' and Israel's EEZ.

    The amount of natural gas discovered exceeds the needs of their domestic markets, which cannot absorb the quantities of natural gas that will be produced, thus its commercial exploitation is necessary through exports to other countries, Davidson said.

    A great opportunity for natural gas transfer to Europe and Asia opens up, but also an opportunity for better relations between Cyprus and neighboring counties, that never existed before, he added.

    These opportunities, he said, exist and the company in co-operation with the government of Cyprus is working on a comprehensive plan, which will guarantee not only the transfer of gas to Cyprus, as soon as possible, to cover its needs but also the creation of the necessary infrastructure that will allow gas exports, Davidson pointed out.

    Cyprus will gain great economic benefits, he stressed, since the world market of liquefied natural gas is strong and will remain so, given the great demand all over the world.

    According to Noble's Chairman exploration will continue in the region, hoping to discover new reserves.

    In a message to the award dinner, the President of the Republic Demetris Christofias expressed appreciation to Noble for discovering gas fields in Cyprus' EEZ, stressing its enormous political and geostrategic importance both for EU energy security and the promotion of peace and security in the Eastern Mediterranean.

    Natural gas exploration can serve as an additional incentive to achieve a solution to the Cyprus problem, Christofias underlined.

    Cyprus-US Chamber of Commerce President Vassos Vassiliou said the discovery has raised Cyprus' profile and prospects for a better future, creating at the same time prospects of a solution to the Cyprus issue.

    In December 2011, President Christofias announced that the results of the exploratory drilling in Cyprus` block 12 were positive, describing the discovery of hydrocarbons as historic for the island.

    US company Noble Energy, which carried out the drilling, discovered 310 feet of net natural gas pay. The drilling reached a depth of 19,225 feet in water depth of about 5,540 feet.

    The initial data that emerged from the exploratory drilling and the evaluation checks carried out indicate the existence of a natural gas reservoir ranging from 5 to 8 trillion cubic feet (tcf) with a gross mean of 7 tcf.

    Cyprus has also launched a second licensing round for the 12 remaining blocks of its Exclusive Economic Zone.

    Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded and occupied its northern third. UN-led peace talks are currently underway between the leaders of the island's two communities, in an effort to find a negotiated settlement that will unite the country under a federal roof.

    Recently an announcement in the official gazette of Turkey read that areas spanning from Rhodes to the south west of Cyprus are given out for hydrocarbons studies and drilling. Maps published in the gazette show that the permits stretch as far as he Greek island of Rhodes as well as plots 1, 4, 5, 6 and 7 delineated by the Republic of Cyprus in the Eastern Mediterranean.

    [02] Government strengthens policies on family life

    The government, in spite of pressure on public finances, has strengthened existing policies and introduced new measures to help the Cypriot family and reconcile work and family life, Labour Minister Sotiroula Charalambous has said. The demographic and family policy forum will draft, during its forthcoming meeting on May 16, a comprehensive five-year population programme, she added.

    Speaking at an event organized by the Pancyprian Organization of Large Families, on the occasion of the World Mother's Day, the Minister said the government is ready to discuss problems large families face, in the light of the latest amendment of the Law on child benefit and the students' grant, depending on public finances and the economy in general.

    The Pancyprian Organization of Large Families and the Pancyprian Organisation of Five-member Families have voiced concerns over the introduction of income and property criteria for the provision of child benefit and the students' grant.

    According to Charalambous, in the first quarter of 2012, 17,224 families with three or more children have received child benefit, totaling 22 million euro.

    [03] AEL FC wins first division championship

    Thousands of fans of AEL Football Club have poured into the streets of Limassol, on the southern coast, to celebrate their team's success, to win the first division championship after 44 years.

    AEL's victory over Anorthosis Famagusta FC on Saturday, in combination with the result of the game between APOEL FC and AC Omonia Nicosia, clinched the championship for AEL.

    AEL will now play against Omonia in the Cup final on May 16.

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