Gas Cartel Won’t Revise Contracts

Government wants Noble Energy, Delek Group to reopen contracts for natural gas from Tamar field.

Tamar natural gas rig, located 90 kilometers west of the city of Haifa, Israel.

The government and the gas cartel companies – Noble Energy and Delek Group – are at odds over whether the companies should reopen contracts they signed to sell natural gas from their Tamar field, sources said Monday.

The government wants the agreements to be revised, saying they were dictated by the companies’ monopoly control over the market. Noble and Delek are refusing to discuss the matter.

The two sides are in talks about restructuring the gas industry after Antitrust Commissioner David Gilo voided an agreement he had made allowing the two companies to retain control of the Tamar and Leviathan fields.

The two sides are also at odds over how to structure a possible solution to breaking the gas cartel by requiring the two companies to sell their gas through independent, competing channels. The question now is how the two will finance development of Leviathan if they go ahead with the proposal.