Highlighting ExxonMobil’s growing interest in Greece’s hydrocarbon market, the global oil industry powerhouse is reportedly looking to set up an Athens office ahead of an international tender offering exploration and exploitation licenses for offshore blocks west and southwest of Crete, sources have informed.
This tender was prompted by investment interest expressed in the aforementioned areas by a consortium comprised of ExxonMobil, Total and ELPE (Hellenic Petroleum).
According to sources, ExxonMobil wants to provide an operating base for a team of company officials to work on the upcoming Crete tender as well as other possible investments in Greece and neighboring countries.
A highly-ranked ExxonMobil official traveled from Houston, Texas to attend an energy conference held just days ago in Alexandroupoli, northeast Greece. The US Ambassador to Greece, Geoffrey R. Pyatt, who also took part in the event, spoke favorably of the US firm’s interest in the Crete hydrocarbon tender.
ExxonMobil already maintains a strong presence in the wider east Mediterranean region. Last December, the US oil firm and Qatar Petroleum were declared the winning bidders of Cyprus’s Block 10, southwest of the island. A few days ago, this consortium announced that it plans to stage two drills in 2018.
ExxonMobil is believed to consider the east Mediterranean as one of the world’s most promising new hydrocarbon regions. The discovery of Zohr, a gigantic deposit in Egypt’s maritime zone, has proven to be a game changer for the hydrocarbon prospects of the wider region. The development is seen as a pivotal factor behind ExxonMobil’s decision to become involved in the Greek hydrocarbon market.