Atwood Hunter RigStill think Israel is oil and gas poor? Reuter’s annouced today that “a consortium of Israeli companies and Noble Energy … will soon begin drilling for natural gas off Israel’s Mediterranean coast.” 

It’s also been confirmed that Atwood Oceanics’ Hunter offshore rig is on its way from West Africa. The Hunter rig, according to Atwood has a day rate (cost to operate daily) of $460,000 – $511,000 and should be in place off the coast of Haifa by November. This is a serious exploration effort in which Noble estimates a 35% chance of finding 1 billion cubic meters of natural gas. 

Below are the Reuters and Globes articles:


TEL AVIV, Oct 19 (Reuters) A consortium of Israeli companies and Noble Energy of the United States said on Sunday they will soon begin drilling for natural gas off Israel’s Mediterranean coast at a cost of $144.5 million. The Israeli partners in the project are Isramco Negev 2, Delek Drilling, Avner Oil Exploration  and Dor Gas Exploration. The Tamar 1 drilling site is located 90 km west of the northern port of Haifa and is considered to be the most promising drilling site in Israel, Isramco said in a statement. 

Noble estimates there is a 35 percent chance of finding natural gas, in the amount of 1 billion cubic meters, the statement said. 

Isramco Negev 2 is a subsidiary of Naphtha Israel Petroleum Corp. Noble, Delek and Avner are already developing a natural gas site off Israel’s southern coast.

(Reporting by Tova Cohen; Editing by Tomasz Janowski)


Haifa offshore natural gas exploration to go ahead (Globes)

The Atwood Hunter oil rig slated to drill at the Tamar 1 concession has departed West Africa en route to Israel.

Lior Baron19 Oct 08 14:51

Delek Group Ltd. (TASE: DLEKG) and Isramco Ltd. (Nasdaq: ISRL; TASE: ISRA.L) today reported that the Atwood Hunter oil rig slated to drill at the Tamar 1 natural gas concession offshore from Haifa, has departed West Africa en route to Israel. The Atwood Hunter is due to arrive during the second half of November.

The Tamar 1 exploration is one of the largest natural gas explorations underway in Israel, with an investment of $144.5 million. The partners in the concession are Delek subsidiaries Delek Drilling Limited Partnership (TASE: DEDR.L) and Avner Oil and Gas LP (TASE: AVNR.L) (a 28% share altogether), Isramco (28%), Noble Energy Inc. (NYSE: ) subsidiary Nobel Energy Mediterranean Ltd. (33%), Dorgas Ltd. (6%), and STX, controlled by Benny Steimetz (5%). STX reportedly withdrew plans to participate in the Tamar 1 exploration; its share in the investment was $7 million. 

The other partners nevertheless decided to go ahead with the exploration. Energy market sources believe that Delek and Isramco will buy out STX’s stake. 

Delek Drilling and Avner last week announced decided not to distribute NIS 36 million in outstanding profits for 2007. The money will instead be used for exploration of the Michal and Matan concessions offshore from Haifa and Atlit, including the Tamar 1 exploration. Tamar 1 is located 90 kilometers west of Haifa in 1,650-meter water. The concession is considered one of the more promising sites. Natural gas is expected at a depth of 5,000 meters below the seabed. 

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news – – on October 19, 2008 

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2008

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