Cyprus and Israel Look to Settle Gas Dispute

Αssociated press

FIE - Cyprus' Energy, Commerce, Industry and Tourism minister Yiorgos Lakkotrypis talks during the Eastern Mediterranean gas conference in capital Nicosia, Cyprus, on Wednesday, March 21, 2018. (AP Photo/Petros Karadjias)

NICOSIA (AP) — Cyprus' energy minister says companies with a stake in a gas field off the east Mediterranean island will sit down with an Israeli company to settle a dispute over how much the field extends into Israeli waters.

Energy Minister Yiorgos Lakkotrypis said Wednesday that the dispute over the Aphrodite gas field, which is estimated to contain around 4.5 trillion cubic feet of gas, is one of "the most serious differences" that Cyprus has with Israel.

Lakkotrypis said U.S. firm Noble Energy and partners Shell and Delek will sit down with Israeli Opportunity Energy Resources to figure out how much gas from Aphrodite, which straddles the Cyprus-Israel dividing line, falls into the Israeli side.

He said if that doesn't work out, an expert will be called in to arbitrate.