Italian firm Eni has made its 23 tcf Zohr gas field, discovered just six months ago offshore Egypt, a vital cog in its new four-year strategy of focusing on lower-cost ‘near-field’ projects.

Italy’s Eni plans to increase production over the next four years despite slashing capex. To achieve this, it will “refocus its activity on near field and incremental exploration opportunities with high potential value, which allow in case of success their quick exploitation...