CAIRO – 15 June 2022: Egypt's Minister of Petroleum Tarek El-Molla and Israel's Minister of Energy Karin Elharar signed an agreement on Wednesday on natural gas delivery to the European Union (EU) from the East Med region, according to media reports.
The agreement was signed during the ministerial meeting of the East Med Gas Forum (EMGF).
“With this EU-Egypt-Israel agreement we will work on the stable delivery of natural gas to the EU from the East Med region,” Ursula von der Leyen, President of the EU Commission tweeted on Wednesday.
“This will contribute to our EU energy security and we are building infrastructure fit for renewables - the energy of the future,” she added.
Von der Leyen said she is currently in a visit to Egypt to meet with President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi.
Discussions with Sisi will focus on tackling food insecurity in the region and in the world, extending our energy and climate cooperation, and ensuring a successful COP27, she added.
The gas deal signed between Egypt, Israel and the EU aims at reducing the EU reliance on Russian gas supplies.
According to Bloomberg, Israel will send gas to the EU after being liquified in Egypt.
This comes in the wake of Russia’s decision to cut off gas supplies to a number of European countries, including Germany and Denmark, which refused to pay for Russian natural gas imports in rubles in the wake of the ongoing Russian invasion on Ukraine since February.
Egypt, a country that has achieved self-sufficiency in natural gas since 2018, had gas export revenues of $3.9 billion in the first four months of 2022.
This represents the revenues Egypt obtained in the whole year of 2021, which stood at $3.959 billion up from $456 million in 2020 according to Reuters.
In April, a framework agreement was signed between the Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company (EGAS) and Italian oil firm Eni for cooperation in the field of natural gas to export liquified natural gas (LNG) to Europe.
The deal aims at making the optimal use of Egypt's natural gas reserves by maximizing production capabilities in a way that enables EGAS to explore new opportunities to increase production.
It also aims at benefitting from great potentials available in Egypt in the field of oil exploration, especially in the Nile Delta, the Eastern Mediterranean, and the Western Desert.
The framework agreement provides an opportunity to export LNG shipments from the Damietta LNG plant to Italy and other European countries.
Eni 2015 discovered the super giant Zohr gas field in Egypt in 2015, representing one of the biggest-ever offshore gas discoveries in the Mediterranean.
Egypt is looking forward to becoming a major player in the global LNG market.