Turkish Minister of Energy Taner Yıldız: The deal has become politically inconceivable.
Israel’s incursion into the Gaza Strip has resulted in the freezing of progress on a deal to sell Israeli gas to Turkey, after the possibility became politically inconceivable, Turkey’s Minister of Energy Taner Yıldız said yesterday. The minister said at a press conference that “in the reality that has come about it will not be gas that flows in a pipeline constructed between Israel and Turkey but the blood of the innocents.”
Nevertheless, the Turkish minister did leave an opening for renewal of negotiations on future gas purchases, saying that Turkey would review its position if a long-term cease-fire was achieved and if Israel lifted its blockade of the Gaza Strip.
The developers of the Leviathan gas reserve, US company Noble Energy (39.66%), Delek Group Ltd. (TASE: DLEKG) units Avner and Delek Drilling (45.33%), and Ratio Oil Exploration (1992) LP (TASE:RATI.L) (15%), have been conducting negotiations for a year on selling gas to Turkey under a fifteen-year agreement that would be worth tens of billions of dollars.
Ten consortia have been involved in a quasi-tender process that the Leviathan partners have been conducting, from which one leading consortium is meant to be selected in the next few days. The name that has appeared in international media reports is that of a consortium of Turkey’s Sabanci Group and German energy giant E.ON, in equal shares.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news – www.globes-online.com