Gazprom fits bill for Israeli gas

Oct. 18, 2012 at 9:25 AM

NETANYA, Israel, Oct. 18 (UPI) -- Criteria for investing in the Leviathan gas field off the Israeli coast suggests Gazprom is set to take on a stake in the project, an Israeli daily reports.

Israeli business daily Globes said qualifications in natural gas development, liquefied natural gas processing and other benchmarks suggest Russian natural gas company Gazprom is set to take on a stake on the giant offshore Leviathan gas field.

Delek Group and Noble Energy, a company based in the United States, are among the major offshore players in the Israeli natural gas sector. They've discovered enough gas in the Tamar and Leviathan fields to last the country 150 years.

In March, Delek suggested Israel would need more than $10 billion worth of export infrastructure for the natural gas.

A source close to the negotiations told the Israeli newspaper that some of the companies working in Leviathan would prefer a Western partner, however.

Environmental concerns and a lack of available land are hindering Israel's ability to build a liquefied natural gas plant to export Leviathan reserves.

Rumors of a Gazprom acquisition have circulated at least since March. None of the companies involved issued public comments related to the Globes report.

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