Only two bidders participated in Israel’s most recent 24-block auction, which closed on 15 November.

Greek firm Energean and a consortium of Indian companies led by state firm ONGC Videsh were the two bidders, although it is not clear how many blocks were bid on. Despite veritable gas riches offshore Israel, with around 35tcf of gas discovered since 2009, firms were put off by complex geopolitics in the region that make it hard to find a viable export market.

The bid round was...