Photo Credit: Government of Lebanon
Lebanon's offshore oil and gas blocs

Lebanon has finally begun the process of exploring for oil and gas within its own territorial waters.

A Transocean Barents drilling platform was reported Tuesday to be heading towards Bloc 9 to carry out the country’s first drilling operation for oil and gas exploration and extraction.


TotalEnergies awarded Transocean Barents a one-well, $365,000 contract set to begin in August and continue into October 2023, plus three one-well options at a similar price, according to Offshore Engineer.

Transocean Ltd., an American firm, is based in Vernier, Switzerland and is the world’s largest offshore drilling contractor based on revenue.

The platform is expected to dock in Lebanese waters by mid-August, following power conversion at the Strait of Gilbraltar.

TotalEnergies EP Lebanon applied for the drilling license on June 27, and the first ship carrying pipelines to support drilling operations in Bloc 9 has already arrived in the Port of Beirut, according to Ya Libnan.

The port administration is charging TotalEnergies EP Lebanon an annual fee of $600,000 to rent space in the port for a logistics base.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for, and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.