Italy’s Eni will complete the first phase of its gas treatment plant for Egypt’s Zohr field’s production by October 2017. Phase I represents up to 24% of the facility with a treatment capacity at 650mcf/d of gas, reported Daily News Egypt. A source from Eni estimated that total investments required to completed the entire treatment plant including all development phases will reach $4b. Upon completion, the facility will be able to process a total of 2.7bcf/d of gas.

The source further stated that the company finished drilling 6 wells before the scheduled deadline and will link the production of the wells to the gas treatment plant by the end of 2017, reported Al Borsa. It is noted that deepwater drilling costs for a single well at Zohr is about $100m.

By the end of 2017 or early 2018, Eni aims to boost Egypt’s gas production by link 900mcf/d of output from Zohr. The project production capacity is estimated to reach 2.7bcf by 2020.

This comes as Eni’s CEO, Claudio Descalzi, had stated that the company was in talks with various parties in order to cut its stake in Egypt’s Zohr field to 50% operating interest instead of owning the entire stake in the concession that includes Zohr.  Descalzi comments had came days after the company agreed to sell a 10%  stake of Zohr to UK’s BP for $375m. BP, which has an option to buy another 5% , would also reimburse Eni for around $150m of past costs.