Talks between Eni and Naturgy regarding the re-opening of the Damietta liquefaction plant are at an “advanced stage”, Reuters reported.

Operations at the Damietta plant are expected to start in 2019.

The Ministry of Petroleum had reached an agreement in September with its partners in the Damietta liquefaction plant to gradually re-open the facility and export natural gas produced from Zohr in 2019, a source previously told Al Borsa.

The re-opening of the plant will come after a six-year halt since the government diverted export supplies to the domestic market in July 2012, the source said.

The Egyptian government recently settled a long-running dispute with Union Fenosa regarding the halting of gas supplies to Damietta in 2012. Egypt agreed to pay $2 billion to the Eni-Naturgy joint venture company as a settlement for breaching the terms of a bilateral investment treaty between Spain and Egypt.