Turkey will begin drilling for oil or gas off Turkish Cyprus towards the end of March, having carried out seismic studies, the head of state energy company Turkish Petroleum Corporation (TPAO) said yesterday.
Greek Cyprus started exploring for gas south of the island in September 2011, angering Turkey.
In reaction, Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot administration signed a pact paving the way for exploration, and dispatched its seismic research vessel to search for potential reserves. “We’re starting drilling in northern Cyprus in the coming days... We have started shipping our equipment there,” TPAO chief executive Mehmet Uysal told Reuters yesterday, adding that drilling would start before the end of March.
Eroğlu coming to Turkey
Meanwhile, Turkish Cypriot President Derviş Eroğlu is set to pay a visit to Ankara today on the invitation of his Turkish counterpart Abdullah Gül. Eroğlu is expected to discuss the Cyprus process with Gül. He will be accompanied by Foreign Minister and his special representative Kudret Özersay.