The project, that will constitute the world's longest underwater pipeline and is expected to cost over $7 billion (that will be financed by private enterprise), will provide gas deriving from Eastern Mediterranean to Europe. The aforementioned countries will be benefitted over others in exporting gas to European market, but more counties can access the pipeline, provided that they reach an agreement with the four initial members. It is expected that the deal will be sealed in February 2019, after negotiations that last since the last memorandum of understanding in 2017. Current estimations show that, if no delays occur, the pipeline could be fully operational by 2025.
Energy Minister of Israel, Yuval Steinitz commented on the potential of the project. “For decades, we have complained about the Arab influence in Europe due to oil and gas. The export of gas to Europe will moderate this influence to a certain extent and be a counterweight to Arab power,” he said.
The pipe is expected to produce up to 20 billion m3 annually when Europe's need for gas will increase by 100 billion m3 by 2030. The starting point of the pipeline is located 170 km off Cyprus’s southern coast. Beginning there, it will stretch for 2,200 km in order to end up in Otranto, Italy passing by Crete and Greek mainland.
In contrary with previous periods, the bonds between Israel and Greece-Cyprus have tightened and “an alliance for good” has been established as Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, stated. Therefore, the conditions are beneficial for the realization of the pipeline. Greece’s Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has called the project “emblematic” of the cooperation between the three countries.