Nicosia.- (CNA)-United States of America support a just solution to the Cyprus problem, said on Friday the new US Ambassador to Cyprus John Koenig, noting at the same time that the energy issues offer a great prospects for the Cypriot economy.
Koenig was speaking to the press following his today’s meeting with the General Secretary of leftwing ruling party AKEL Andros Kyprianou, held at AKEL’s headquarters in Nicosia, during which the two men discussed, inter alia, the Cyprus question and the U.S. relations with Cyprus and AKEL.
In his statements, Kyprianou referred to the good cooperation he used to have with John Koenig when he was οn the island 15 years ago, while he expressed certainty that their today’s cooperation would be as good as it was back then.
AKEL’s General Secretary of AKEL said that during their meeting they had the opportunity to exchange views on the Cyprus problem and other more general issues regarding U.S. relations with Cyprus and AKEL.
Kyprianou said that he affirmed AKEL’s commitment to `work towards a solution to the Cyprus problem “, adding that his party insists that only through a just – under the circumstances-, functional and viable solution could the Republic of Cyprus and the Cypriot economy be developed in favor of the Greek Cypriots, Turkish Cypriots, Maronites, Armenians and Latins.
On his part, the American Ambassador said that he had a “very open discussion” with AKEL’s General Secretary and expressed his pleasure for the opportunity to meet with Andros Kyprianou after 15 years.
The U.S. Ambassador said that they had discussed very openly about the Cyprus problem, noting that the United States support a just solution to the Cyprus problem.
He also said that they discussed the issue of cooperation between Cyprus and the U.S., as well as AKEL – U.S relations.
John Koenig said that he was pleased with the discussion and cooperation and that he looks forward to other opportunities to meet again.
Asked if they discussed any energy issues, he said that they did not discuss this issue in any detail, noting however that everybody acknowledges that this is a very important issue that offers great prospects for the Cypriot economy.
Exploratory drilling conducted by Huston-based Noble Energy in Block 12 of Cyprus’ Exclusive Economic Zone, revealed an estimated gross natural gas reserve of 5 to 8 tcf , with a gross mean of 7 Tcf.
The government approved on November 23, last year, the launch of a second licensing round for the remaining 12 offshore blocks, a decision published in the EU Official Journal on February 11, 2012 and expired on May 11, after a three-month bidding period. Fifteen companies and joint ventures, including energy heavyweights such as French Total and Korean KOGAS, have bided for 9 out of Cyprus’ 12 offshore exploration blocks. Bids are being currently evaluated by the government.