Israel’s Delek Drilling said it has completed testing of a subsea natural gas pipeline to Egypt, but it did not begin commercial sales by the end of June as it had initially hoped.
Delek Drilling and its partner Noble Energy signed a landmark deal early last year to export $15 billion in natural gas from Israeli offshore fields Tamar and Leviathan to a customer in Egypt.
Israeli officials called it the most significant deal to emerge since the neighbors made peace in 1979.
Delek Drilling Deputy CEO Yossi Gvura told Reuters in early June that they hoped to start selling small quantities of gas to Egypt by the end of the month, but the company said July 2 exports had not yet begun.
Due to the forecast demand for gas in Israel over the summer, the company expects commercial sales to Egypt to begin only when the Leviathan Field comes online by year-end 2019.
Delek and Noble have agreed to buy into the EMG gas pipeline between Ashkelon in Israel and El-Arish in Egypt to transport the gas supplies. Now that the technical examination of the pipeline is complete, Delek expects to close the EMG deal by Aug. 31.
Despite this week’s decline, the total rig count was up 237, or 94%, over this time last year, according to Baker Hughes data going back to 1940.
A new Walker Ridge discovery in the U.S. Gulf by Chevron plus two more Wolfcamp Shale producers from CrownQuest’s Avogadro prospect in the Permian Basin top this week’s oil and gas drilling activity highlights from around the world.
As public E&Ps stay disciplined and privates take an ‘aggressive approach’ across the U.S. shale patch, analysts see continued efficiency gains and rising costs from oilfield service companies.