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South Cyprus and Israel agreed to expand their cooperation on energy issues, such as the use of pipelines and electricity grids so that they can be linked to European markets.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the Greek Cypriot Leader Nicos Anastasiades said they would seek to exploit the potential of natural gas in the sea bed beneath both countries.

Israel has reported some of the largest natural gas discoveries worldwide in the past decade, whereas South Cyprus found gas offshore in 2011.

Netanahyu said the two countries were exploring various options on collaboration, but did not elaborate. Anastasiades said among the options were an East Mediterranean pipeline and the Eurasia interconnector, a private project to transport to Europe electricity powered by natural gas.

Anastasiades said: “With the Prime Minister, we agree that the exploration and exploitation of hydrocarbon assets is a sovereign right that is instrumental in the wider regional context and as part of a reciprocally beneficial relationship.

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