Delek Drilling – part of the Delek Group which develops Israel’s offshore gas fields – began exports to its Arab neighbour in January 2017, according to an AFP report this week.
Delek Drilling CEO Yossi Abu announced on Thursday: “We started exports at the start of this year, not huge volumes, but it’s still export, to Jordan”.
Gas from the Tamar field is being supplied to two Jordanian customers: Jordan Bromine Company and the Arab Potash Company. In early 2014, Delek signed an agreement to export natural gas with the two consumers, who agreed to buy Israeli gas for their gas plants located on the East Bank of the Jordanian side of the Dead Sea. Gas supply was originally expected to begin in 2016, and was set at a gas price around £409 million.
Israel has also been developing the recently discovered Leviathan gas field. Jordanian gas consumer National Electric Power Company and Noble Energy signed a 15-year £8 billion Leviathan gas deal in September 2016.
In 2016, the Jordanian Government said that the deal with Noble Energy – who holds 39.66% of the shares in Leviathan gas field – will cover “40% of the Kingdom’s needs of gas and save around $600 million (£490 million) annually”. This would allow for around 300 million cubic feet of natural gas to be exported from Israel into Jordan daily.
Anti-normalisation activists in Jordan have promised to increase opposition to relations with its Jewish neighbour in light of the gas deal.
Jordan and Israel signed a peace treaty in 1994, making Jordan the second Arab country, after Egypt, to sign a peace deal with Israel.