Pe­tro­leum Min­istry to sign gas trans­port deal with EU next week

The Daily News Egypt - - Front Page - By Ahmed Is­mail

Min­is­ter of Pe­tro­leum and Min­eral Re­sources Tarek El-Molla said that an agree­ment in the en­ergy sec­tor is set to be signed with the Eu­ro­pean Union next week.

Dur­ing his open­ing speech at the ninth Mediter­ranean Off­shore Con­fer­ence and Ex­hi­bi­tion (MOC 2018) held in Alexan­dria, El-Molla said the agree­ment aims to boost co­op­er­a­tion in the natural gas and pe­tro­leum field. He added that the EU is ex­pected to be the main ben­e­fi­ciary of the trans­ported en­ergy through Egypt.

The min­is­ter pointed out that an ini­tial agree­ment with the Cypriot govern­ment was reached to es­tab­lish a gas pipe­line be­tween the two coun­tries amid on­go­ing dis­cus­sions be­tween the two gov­ern­ments in this re­gard.

El-Molla said that Egypt has wit­nessed sev­eral changes over the past few years, im­pos­ing huge chal­lenges that re­quired eco­nomic re­forms adopted by the govern­ment in sev­eral sec­tors. He said that the oil and gas sec­tor in Egypt is wit­ness­ing sig­nif­i­cant de­vel­op­ments to cope with in­ter­na­tional stan­dards in the frame­work of the Sus­tain­able De­vel­op­ment Strat­egy: Egypt Vi­sion 2030.

Ac­cord­ing to El-Molla, the Min­istry of Pe­tro­leum suc­ceeded last year in adding about 1.6bn cu­bic feet of gas to Egypt’s daily pro­duc­tion, reach­ing about 5.5bn cu­bic feet per day, thanks to new gas fields: in north­ern Alexan­dria, Nooros, Atoll, and Zohr.

El-Molla noted that Egypt aims to be a re­gional hub for trad­ing and trans­port­ing gas and oil, whether through the coun­try’s own pro­duc­tion or im­ports from neigh­bour­ing coun­tries that can be used to meet lo­cal needs or trans­ported to other coun­tries. This im­por­tant step was based on sev­eral fac­tors, no­tably Egypt’s strate­gic lo­ca­tion on both sides of the Suez Canal and the suit­able in­fra­struc­ture for trans­port­ing, stor­ing, and trad­ing crude oil, pe­tro­leum prod­ucts, and gas with Asia, the Mid­dle East, and Eu­rope.

El-Molla as­serted that Egypt has taken se­ri­ous steps in this re­gard, in­clud­ing the is­suance of a new gas law and form­ing a joint com­mit­tee be­tween the govern­ment and rel­e­vant en­ti­ties and bodies to solve po­ten­tial chal­lenges.

On the other hand, Fabio Ca­vanna, chair­per­son of Ieoc, af­fil­i­ated with Ital­ian en­ergy com­pany Eni, said the com­pany aims to in­crease the Zohr field’s gas pro­duc­tion to about 1.2bn cu­bic feet of gas per day by May, with ex­pec­ta­tion to reach 2bn cu­bic feet per day by the end of the year and 2.7bn cu­bic feet in 2019.

Tarek El-Molla

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