Cypriot MP’s OK Energy Fund for Oil, Gas Discoveries

(AP Photo/Petros Karadjias, FILE)

With US energy giant ExxonMobil – defying Turkey – saying it had discounted a bounty of gas off Cyprus, the legitimate government’s Parliament agreed to set up an investment fund setting any potentially lucrative revenues to be set aside for future generations, not spent.’

Averof Neophytou, leader of the conservative Democratic Rally party said all the monies would be reserved. There was no explanation whether, as Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades had said, whether they would be shared with Turkish-Cypriots who’ve been occupying the northern third since an unlawful 1974 invasion.

Anastasiades, hailing the fund’s approval on his official Twitter account said it rules out disbursements but would also safeguard the rights of Turkish-Cypriots to to any hydrocarbon wealth.

But the Turkish-Cypriot side opposes the search for oil and gas in Cyprus’ Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ,) parts of which Turkey won’t recognize and is challenging, including sending warships off the coast into the waters in a bid to keep out all foreign companies.

(Material from the Associated Press was used in this report)