Chevron Corporation has acquired Noble Energy.

The $5 billion deal includes Noble’s stake in Israeli offshore natural gas fields.

This is the first time a major oil company has entered the Israeli energy market.

Chevron becomes the operator of the Leviathan and Tamar gas fields in the Mediterranean. They will also acquire Noble’s stake in Cyprus’s Aphrodite gas field.

Israel’s Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz said the deal was a “tremendous expression of confidence in the Israeli energy market”.

US Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette tweeted, “We look forward to what American ingenuity can do to boost energy development and security in the region.”

Chevron CEO Mike Wirth reportedly said the company was mindful of “political differences and tensions” between Israel and its neighbours where Chevron does business.

Chevron was “apolitical” and a “commercial actor”.

The Israeli government approved an agreement with European countries for construction of a pipeline to supply Europe with natural gas from eastern Mediterranean earlier this week.

Steinitz said the deal would bring tens of billions of dollars to Israel and benefit the state for years.

The pipeline is reportedly expected to be completed by 2025.

A land and sea survey will determine the route of the 1,900km pipeline.