A note of optimism for a resolution of the Cyprus-Israel dispute over the Aphrodite deposit is being 'extracted' following contacts between the two sides at the level of energy ministers in Nicosia. As officially announced during the official visit of the Minister of Energy of the State of Israel to Cyprus, Ms. Karine Elharrar and the Minister of Energy, Trade and Industry, Ms. Natasha Pileidou, agreed to continue the constructive process on the issue of the Aphrodite and Ishai deposits, with the aim of a fair and speedy resolution of the dispute.
The working groups have made progress on key aspects and have developed a roadmap for future negotiations. Both sides expressed optimism about the chances of settling the issue and encouraged the companies involved to continue their own dialogue.
After the conclusion of the consultations, Energy Minister Natasha Pileidou said that Cyprus and Israel "share a common vision for the full exploitation of the potential of the natural gas reserves of the Eastern Mediterranean, thus diversifying both the sources and routes of energy to Europe. In this context, the two Energy Ministries have made significant progress in discussions leading to a mutually beneficial settlement of the issue of the Aphrodite and Ishai fields, both in terms of the relevant bilateral agreement and the terms of reference for the expert to be appointed by the two countries. These discussions will continue in a structured manner in the coming weeks". For her part, Israel's Energy Minister said "In light of the global energy crisis and Europe's growing gas needs, I believe it is in our interest for both sides to accelerate their work towards a swift, transparent and fair settlement. The trust between us and the continuation of our fruitful cooperation in our various fields is very important for both parties."
[This article was translated from its Greek original]