News Local Cyprus and Lebanon to negotiate agreement for hydrocarbon reserves

Cyprus and Lebanon to negotiate agreement for hydrocarbon reserves

Cyprus and Lebanon have agreed to commence negotiations in order to conclude a framework agreement regarding the development of hydrocarbon reserves extending on both sides of the median line between their respective exclusive economic zones (EEZ).

According to a Foreign Ministry announcement, Minister Nicos Christodoulides, together with the Minister of Energy, Commerce, and Industry Yiorgos Lakkortypis, met on Thursday in Beirut with Lebanon’s Foreign and Energy Ministers, Gebran Bassil and Nada Boustani, respectively.

Among others, they discussed issues pertaining to the cooperation between Cyprus and Lebanon in the energy and energy security sectors in the broader region of the Eastern Mediterranean.

Speaking after the meeting, Christodoulides said they had reviewed bilateral relations and look into ways to broaden and deepen them further, for the benefit of both countries and their people. He added that together with the competent Ministers from both countries they had a thorough, results-oriented discussion on energy matters.

The results of hydrocarbon exploration, both in Cyprus, as well as in Lebanon, leave us particularly satisfied, Christodoulides said, and referred to the interest shown by large international companies in investing in the EEZ of both countries.

Christodoulides also noted that Ministers reaffirmed their mutual support for both countries exercising their sovereign rights to explore and exploit their natural resources, located in the respective maritime areas, in line with international law and in particular the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, to which both countries are signatories.

Cyprus respects and supports the sovereign rights and the jurisdiction of all countries in the region, including Lebanon, within their maritime zones, on the basis of international law, he added.

Christodoulides further said that they agreed over the need to utilise the impetus following energy developments in the region, and use it as a catalyst to enhance bilateral cooperation further. In this respect, he said, we agreed to immediately commence talks to conclude a bilateral Framework Agreement regarding the development of hydrocarbon reserves extending in both sides of the median line between the EEZ of both countries.

According to the Minister, such an agreement would send a strong message for cooperation between the two countries, providing international companies, wishing to invest in the exploration of hydrocarbons in the area, with the necessary legal security.

He also noted that the two sides agreed to start discussions to conclude an agreement for the protection of underwater cultural heritage from illegal excavations, within the respective areas of jurisdiction of both countries. Christodoulides also said that he looks forward to signing a bilateral agreement with Lebanon on search and rescue activities.

The Foreign Minister congratulated Lebanon for the generous hospitality of 1.5 million refugees from Syria and announced the donation of €50,000 on behalf of the Republic of Cyprus, in order to strengthen programmes that aim at improving access to education for young disadvantaged Lebanese girls.

The Foreign Minister also assured that Cyprus, which has also been affected by turbulence in the broader region, will continue to support Lebanon in addressing the challenges that add a disproportionate weight on the country, both on a bilateral level as well as through EU channels.

He thanked finally Gebran Bassil for his hospitality and noted that the Beirut visit is indicative of Cyprus’ resoluteness to cooperate with Lebanon in addressing the common challenges and in defining a stable path to secure a peaceful future, with prosperity for both countries and the region.

(Cyprus News Agency)

Top Stories

45 year old woman arrested in 72 kilo cannabis case

  Police have made a fourth arrest in connection with 72 kilos of cannabis that was discovered in a Limassol warehouse last week. Three men aged...

NASA resumes human spaceflight from U.S. soil with historic SpaceX launch

  SpaceX, the private rocket company of billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk, launched two Americans into orbit from Florida on Saturday in a landmark mission marking...

Trump postpones G7 summit, seeks to add countries to invitation list

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Saturday he would postpone a Group of Seven summit he had hoped to hold next month until September...

‘I can’t breathe’ protests heat up as curfews imposed in several U.S. cities

Civil unrest flared and curfews were imposed in several major U.S. cities on Saturday as demonstrators took to the streets to vent outrage at...

Bright and sunny today, dust from tomorrow

  The weak low pressure that is affecting the area is receding and light dust is possible in the atmosphere tomorrow and Tuesday, the Met...

Taste

Local cuisine: An introduction

Rich in fresh ingredients and tasty herbs, offers the very best of Mediterranean culinary delights. Head out to a tavern and feast on a...

Spiced lamb with beetroot salad and scented yoghurt

Lay the lamb on a tray, skin side down. Rub with crushed garlic, sprinkle with spices and ground pistachios, wrap in plastic wrap and...

Easy seafood pasta with white wine sauce

Ingredients: 2-3 tbsp olive oil 1 garlic clove, chopped 2-3 tablespoons of whipped cream 1/3 cup white wine 300g spaghetti, roughly broken 300-400g of...

Traditional salads that will blow your mind away

This traditional salads will make you actually love salads! Cyprus may be famous for souvla and kleftiko but if you try the traditional salads with...