The local partners in Israel’s giant Leviathan natural gas field say they have signed commitment letters with two major banks for up to $1.75b in financing, Oil Price reported.

Israel’s Delek Drilling and Avner Oil Exploration, which is the smaller partners in the field alongside US Noble Energy, said the commitment letters were from HSBC and J.P. Morgan, and the funds of between $1.5b and $1.75b would be used for the A1 development phase of the field. The first phase of the project involves an initial investment of $4b to produce 12bcm/y of gas for domestic customers as well as, initially, Jordanian, Palestinian and Egyptian markets, informed Engineering News-Record.

The first phase of Leviathan’s development includes the drilling of eight production wells, which are to be linked to an offshore production-and-treatment platform and, from there, by undersea pipeline to two entry points along Israel’s central coast. Delek Drilling’s CEO, Yossi Abu said: “About 60% of the project has already been finalized, including much of the procurement.”

The eventual investment in Leviathan and related export gas pipeline projects could surpass $10b, with further possible customers in Turkey and Europe. Furthermore, the partners are moving to develop the offshore field since they settled, earlier this year, government antitrust concerns that had stalled the project. Gas is projected to start pumping by 2019.