Cyprus has turned down Chevron Corp's proposal, led by a consortium including Shell Plc and Israel's NewMed Energy LP, for the development of the Aphrodite gas field. Energy Minister Giorgos Papanastasiou revealed that the involved parties now have a 30-day window to engage in discussions to seek a resolution.
The rejection came as a surprise, with the government not providing specific reasons for its decision. Chevron's consortium had submitted an updated plan in May, outlining the vision to connect the Aphrodite reservoir to an existing processing facility in Egypt through a subsea pipeline. This revised approach was expected to result in reduced development costs and an accelerated production start.
Aphrodite, which was first discovered in 2011, holds an estimated 4.4 trillion cubic feet (125 billion cubic meters) of untapped gas reserves. It is located near the Leviathan field off the coast of Israel, operated jointly by Chevron and NewMed Energy.
The decision raises questions about the potential impact on Cyprus's energy ambitions and its contribution to the broader Mediterranean energy landscape. However, no immediate response was given by Chevron, Shell, or NewMed Energy in reaction to the news. The outcome of the negotiations will be closely watched by industry observers as they unfold over the next month.