The recent discoveries of major hydrocarbon deposits in the east Mediterranenean region, Greece’s relative political stability and - contrary to most neighbors - lack of geopolitical issues, as well as the reduction of hydrocarbon exploration and recovery costs are all combining to currently offer favorable market conditions for investors, as reflected by their rekindled interest of late.
Virtually all of the global oil industry’s major players are believed to be eyeing the Greek market as a result of these favorable conditions, pundits have pointed out.
Visits to Greece by officials representing top-notch energy companies, increased entries into an electronic data room set up by EDEY, the Greek Hydrocarbon Management Company, and an increased number of requests for meetings with local authorities are all firm indicators of the growing interest.
The avoidance of time-consuming bureaucratic procedures is a key concern for prospective investors. To date, investors have focused most of their attention on offshore areas in the Ionian Sea and off Crete.
Within the next few weeks, Norwegian seismic survey company PGS is expected to make available improved results offering greater clarity of data collected in the past.
Among the major international players, Total and Exxonmobil have already purchased seismic suveys for Greek areas. Just recently, Spain’s Repsol entered the Greek market by reaching a farm out agreement with Energean Oil & Gas for a 60% interest in the latter’s Ioannina and Etoloakarnania blocks. Other major firms such as Eni, Shell, Statoil, as well as regional players like MOL and INA, are all believed to be considering making investments in Greece’s hydrocarbon sector.