Lebanon Set to Move on from Being the East Med Petroleum “Bridesmaid”

The Lebanon International Oil & Gas Summit being held in Beirut on 2-4 April will serve as a range finder on the progress being made with the country’s current Second Licensing Round.

Hopes are high that Lebanon is set to move on from being the East Med’s petroleum “bridesmaid” after the problems of the 2013 First Round, especially given that a Total-led consortium (with ENI and Novatek) signed up for Blocks 4 and 9 in 2018. This was given added spice in February when ENI/Total announced a major find across the Levant Basin on offshore Cyprus.

Things have come a long way since the pioneering days of Noble Energy and Delek Group 2009-2011 when the Leviathan, Tamar and Aphrodite discoveries in Israel and Cyprus put the East Med firmly on the map. Despite the political challenges of the East Med “corner”, the news that Egypt crossed 1.8 mpbdoe pf petroleum output in February (overtaking the UK’s 1.7m), the launch of Egypt’s first Red Sea licensing round, and Saudi Aramco’s major gas discovery in the Red Sea are all combining to make the “Med and Red” an increasingly dynamic offshore prospect.