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Turkey Increases Black Sea Gas Field Estimate After New Discovery | Greece

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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the estimated reserves in a gas field off the Black Sea coast reached 405 billion cubic meters.

Turkey has increased the estimated reserves at a gas field off its Black Sea coast to 405 billion cubic meters after finding an additional 85 billion cubic meters, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said.

Erdogan said in August that the field contained 320 billion cubic meters of gas, making it the largest natural gas discovery in Turkey.

Drilling vessel Fatih made the discovery about 100 nautical miles north of the Turkish coast.

Even before the Saturday review, analysts had said the find represented a major discovery and was one of the world’s biggest discoveries in 2020.

Work at that borehole was completed after reaching a depth of 4,775 meters as previously planned, Erdogan said, speaking aboard the Fatih on Saturday.

He said the ship would begin new operations at a different borehole in the same field, called Sakarya, next month after returning to port for maintenance. Another ship, called Kanuni, is also heading to the Black Sea for drilling operations, he said.

If the gas can be mined commercially, the discovery could transform Turkey’s dependence on Russia, Iran and Azerbaijan for energy imports. Imports last year totaled more than $ 41 billion.

Analysts called for caution over the significance of the finds, pointing out that deep-sea drilling is expensive and time consuming.

Turkey expects the field’s first gas flow in 2023. A source familiar with the matter said an annual gas flow of 15 billion cubic meters is expected from 2025.

Eastern mediterranean

Ankara expects gas suppliers to offer more competitive pricing and flexibility if they wish to renew long-term contracts totaling 16 billion cubic meters per year.

More than a quarter of Turkey’s long-term gas contracts expire next year, including imports via the pipeline from Russia Gazprom and Azerbaijan SOCAR and a liquefied natural gas (LNG) deal with the Nigeria.

Turkey has also searched for hydrocarbons in the Mediterranean, where its exploration operations in disputed waters have sparked protests from Greece and Cyprus.

Greece and Cyprus pushed for a firmer response to Turkey’s natural gas exploration in disputed waters at a European Union summit on Friday, but they were essentially told to wait until a meeting in December.

This week, Turkey redeployed its study vessel, Oruc Reis, to disputed waters in an area between the Greek Islands, Cyprus and the southern coast of Turkey.

Turkey brought the ship ashore last month for maintenance and resupply, saying the move would give diplomacy a chance.

EU leaders meeting in Brussels on Friday unanimously condemned the decision as provocative and urged Ankara to reverse its decision.

But Erdogan has promised to continue energy exploration.

We will continue our search for hydrocarbon resources in the Black Sea and the Mediterranean, Erdogan said.

He added that the EU had become captive of Greece and the Greek Cypriots in the dispute over natural resources in the eastern Mediterranean and this had damaged the bloc.

If the EU does not have an impartial position in the existing disputes in the Eastern Mediterranean, this situation will be the official declaration of the end of the European Union, he said.



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