By Haluk Direskeneli
For Turkey, there is no southern Cypriot state. Since Turkey does not recognize southern Cyprus there is no exclusive economic zone or EEZ which belongs to southern Cyprus. There is nothing to negotiate since Turkey has no counterparty to negotiate with.
On the other hand, southern Cyprus is a hopeless country with no ability to negotiate. It is historically a sort of spoiled child of the EU and international community. Regardless, Turkey does not care. Southern Cyprus is an unreliable party with a desperate bankrupt economy, a huge burden on the European Union.
Noble Energy (NYSE:NBL) finalized the first offshore drilling and the outcome is not what it had expected. That is why NBL recently transferred some of its shares to an Israeli company, which is a sort of transferring of political risk.
Noble is a medium-sized, purely commercial company which tries to maximize its profit. It carries too much political and technical risk in this venture.
NBL had an EIA report with no political risk foreseen or predicted. Please do note that the commercial environment cannot carry that much political risk.
NBL has already spent over 200million U.S. dollars for the first offshore drilling gamble and the outcome was not as good as expected. Who will be paying the expenses for a new offshore drilling investment? Who will be persuaded?
NBL has already reached the upper limit of its risk-taking capability, and appeared to be exhausted.
All announcements are to be considered “wishful thinking,” since there has beenno proof from aninvestigation yet. They are all predicted in nature.
Please do note that there is no risk of a hot clash or any war for sure. It is only a dispute settlement between two sides, North and South for a fair share of nearby natural resources. Turkish aggression is unavoidable in the natural course of international relations; it is a fair game in dispute resolution.
Israel, Greece and Turkey have no luxury of being enemies. They need each other in the eastern Mediterranean. The existing conflict between Israel and Turkey is an unnecessary and artificial event, and it will be solved with an apology when the existing Israeli government is replaced by the opposition, if the Israeli public wishes so in the next general elections
Mutual respect for the fair share of nearby natural resources is the key t oconflict resolution in the eastern Mediterranean.
Mainland Turkey is pushing Northern Cyprus to have a better economy with new austerity measures, not to spend more than it can generate.
Turkey is a regional power with a population of 75 million, and a vibrant and growing economy. There is no solution without the prior consent of Turkey.
Haluk Direskeneli, Ankara-based Energy Analyst.