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Last Updated: March 2014

Overview


Map of Cyprus
Map of Cyprus
  • As of March 2014, Cyprus did not have proved reserves of oil or natural gas. However, a recent offshore discovery of natural gas resources—with additional exploration on the horizon—has the potential to significantly alter the island nation's energy sector. Cyprus has substantial offshore acreage in the Levant Basin, estimated by the U.S. Geological Survey to contain mean recoverable resources of 1.7 billion barrels of oil and 122 trillion cubic feet (Tcf) of natural gas.
  • In 2011, the U.S. company Noble Energy discovered the Aphrodite field in Block 12 of Cyprus' offshore territory, and estimates indicate that the field contains 5 Tcf of recoverable natural gas resources. A bidding round for the country's offshore blocks concluded in late 2012 and further exploration could begin in the near future. Recent seismic exploration by Noble Energy in the Eastern Mediterranean has discovered what it believes to be evidence of oil resources in the offshore area between Cyprus and Israel, and it estimates that the formations could contain 3 billion barrels of ultimately recoverable oil.
  • Cyprus consumed 60,000 barrels per day (bbl/d) of petroleum in 2012. Cyprus' only oil refinery closed in 2004, ending the country's ability to produce refined petroleum products for the domestic market. Cyprus now imports all of its petroleum products—primarily from fellow European Union member countries—to meet internal demand, with residual fuel oil and distillate fuel oil comprising approximately 65% of all petroleum imports in 2010.
  • Construction is underway on a new oil transshipment terminal at Vasilikos on the country's southern coast, with the first phase of development scheduled to conclude in 2014. This is part of a broader effort to develop Cyprus into a regional energy hub, a plan that includes the construction of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) facility at Vasilikos that will be supplied with natural gas from the country's offshore territory. If completed, the LNG facility could also incorporate natural gas from elsewhere in the eastern Mediterranean, but to date, there are no agreements in place. Additional volumes from Cyprus' offshore areas or from fields elsewhere in the Levant Basin may be required to make an LNG terminal in Vasilikos economically viable.
  • In 2011, Cyprus generated slightly more than 4.5 billion kilowatthours of electricity. Cyprus' electricity sector relies on imported petroleum products for feedstock, although there are plans to convert the country's generating facilities to natural gas over the coming years. As a result of the high import costs of petroleum products, consumers in Cyprus pay some of the highest prices for electricity in the European Union.