Egypt To Halve Arrears With Oil Companies In Coming Weeks

30 Mar 2017   Egypt

Egypt expects to cut the $3.5 billion euros it owes to international oil companies by around half in coming weeks, the Egyptian oil minister said on Wednesday. “We have made a lot of progress on paying off arrears,” Tarek El Molla said at an oil and gas conference. The minister also said he expected to finalise an agreement to import crude oil directly from Iraq in a month at the most. “We will import around 1 million barrels a month,” he said. Asked when Egypt might become an exporter of oil and gas, Molla said the country would be self sufficient by the end of 2018. “Starting from 2019 and beyond we can start talking about exporting,” he […]

A New Start For Egypt And Saudi Arabia’s Weathered Relationship

23 Mar 2017   Egypt, Saudi Arabia

Saudi oil shipments to Egypt have resumed after several months of political crisis between Cairo and Riyadh. Egyptian oil ministry sources stated on 19 March that the first two oil shipments from Saudi giant Aramco have been delivered. No reactions were given by Saudi Aramco or officials until now. Egypt expects to receive two other deliveries on March 26-27. Analysts have been watching the crisis between Saudi Arabia and Egypt, as both Arab leaders were in a brawl based on differences on regional politics, the position of Syria’s president Assad and the role of Russia in the region. In April 2016, Saudi Arabia agreed to finance Egyptian imports of refined products from Aramco for five years in a $23 billion deal. In October 2016, Aramco suspended oil deliveries to Egypt after Cairo supported a Russian backed UN Security Council resolution on Syria. Saudi Arabia is a staunch supporter of […]

Egypt moves from electricity deficit to sufficiency

21 Mar 2017   Egypt

The opening of three major power plants in March was the latest in Egypt’s efforts to end its electricity shortage crisis. “Huge work is being done in this country to end the problem,” said Gamal al-Qaluibi, a power engineering professor at Cairo University. “In less than two years, the government managed to end electrical power shortages and even pave the road for surpluses.” When they are operating fully in 2018 as expected, the three electrical power plants, one in the central province of Beni Suef and the others in the new capital being built on the outskirts of Cairo, will produce 14,000 megawatts of electricity every year. In 2013, Egypt produced 24,000 MW but 29,000 MW were needed to bring light to all households, make factory machines run, power equipment at hospitals and […]

Saudi Aramco to resume oil product shipments to Egypt soon

16 Mar 2017   Egypt, Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabian state oil company Aramco will resume oil product shipments to Egypt some six months after halting them suddenly, the Egyptian Petroleum Ministry said on Wednesday, signaling a potential thaw in relations after months of tension. The ministry said in a statement that it was working with Aramco on a timetable for the resumption of shipments and that the reasons behind the October cut-off were purely commercial. “It was agreed that the Saudi Arabian side would resume Aramco’s shipping of oil products as per the commercial contract signed between the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation and Aramco,” the statement said. Saudi Aramco could not be reached for immediate comment. “Very shortly we will finalize the time and place for receiving shipments from Aramco,” a ministry official told Reuters, asking not to be identified because he is not authorized to speak to the media. Asked if shipments would resume within […]

These Oil Majors Just Made Egypt Their Highest Priority

17 Feb 2017   Egypt

Since 2011, political instability and regional insecurity have plagued Egypt’s economy, and the energy sector has not been spared. Until recently a net gas exporter, Egypt turned into a net importer in 2014 after political turmoil plunged the country into continued energy shortages, with domestic demand outstripping supply. In addition, shattered investor confidence and several devaluations of the local currency deterred foreign companies from investing in Egypt. But Cairo’s fortunes may have turned in August 2015, when Italy’s oil and gas major Eni SpA discovered Zohr, the largest gas field in the Mediterranean ever to be discovered. Now Eni, as well as UK’s supermajor BP, are betting big on the Egyptian gas exploration and production, and will be making Egypt their top investment destination in the coming years, pouring billions of dollars in their projects there. Eni plans to invest US$10 billion in Egypt over the next five years, […]

Oil companies bullish on Egypt, eyeing more investment, discoveries

15 Feb 2017   Egypt

Major international oil companies say they plan to step up their investments in Egypt, expecting to find more oil and gas now that ENI’s giant Zohr gas discovery has put its Mediterranean waters on the map. Once a net gas exporter, Egypt has turned into a major importer in recent years as growing domestic demand outstripped production, but the discovery of the 850 billion-cubic meter Zohr field in 2015 is expected to change that. The field is expected to come into production by the end of the year and will save Egypt billions of dollars in hard currency that would otherwise be spent on imports. The Egyptian government is also seeking to attract foreign investors as it seeks to transform itself into a gas trading hub for its own and other emerging Mediterranean producers. Marc Benayoun, chief executive of Italian energy group Edison, which is exploring areas near the […]

Eni, BP Pouring More Investment Into Egypt Than Anywhere Else

15 Feb 2017   Egypt

Eni SpA will start producing from the giant Zohr natural gas field off Egypt’s Mediterranean coast by the end of 2017 and plans to invest $10 billion in the North African country over the next five years, Chief Executive Officer Claudio Descalzi said. Production plans for Zohr are on schedule, and Egypt will be Eni’s top country for investment in the next two years, Descalzi said at a conference in Cairo. BP Plc, which bought a 10 percent stake in Zohr from Eni last year, invested more in Egypt in 2016 than in any other country and will do so again this year, the company’s CEO Bob Dudley said at the same event. “Some pretty good things are happening here for BP, like Eni,” Dudley said on Tuesday. “In 2016-17 we’re investing more money in Egypt than any country in the world, so this is important for us, we […]

Egypt to Import LNG With an Eye on Self-Sufficiency in 2018

7 Feb 2017   Egypt

Egypt plans to import as many as 108 cargoes of liquefied natural gas this year as the country prepares to start producing at two gas fields and move closer to its goal of self-sufficiency and even exports by 2019. The North African nation will import 100 to 108 LNG shipments this year, including 43 to 45 cargoes in government-to-government contracts from Oman, Russia’s Rosneft PJSC and France’s Engie SA , according to a person familiar with the matter. The remaining imports will be arranged through a tender to be announced in November, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the information isn’t public. Imports may be reduced in 2018 as BP Plc’s North Alexandria concession works to start gas production in April and Eni SpA ’s giant Zohr field plans to produce by the end of the year, the person said. BP bought a 10 percent […]

Egypt Explores for Natural Gas With Eye on Exports by 2019

3 Feb 2017   Egypt

Egypt may announce new discoveries of natural gas by the second half of this year, Oil Minister Tarek El Molla said, bringing it closer to its goal of self-sufficiency by 2019. Egypt will start exporting natural gas in 2019, Mohamed El Masry, chairman of Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Co ., told reporters in Cairo. It will import 43 to 45 cargoes of liquefied natural gas between March and December this year from Oman, Russia’s Rosneft PJSC, and France’s Engie SA , to be paid over six months, he said. The Arab world’s most populous country relies on imports to meet its energy needs. Costs have risen sharply since November, when the government allowed the pound to float and raised interest rates in a bid to restore confidence in its economy. Rosneft agreed in December to buy as much as 35 percent of the Shorouk concession, joining Eni SpA and […]

How The Saudi Rift With Egypt Is Spiraling Out Of Control

25 Jan 2017   Egypt, Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia’s rift with Egypt is spiraling out of control, with major strategic ramifications for both countries, as well as for the Yemen conflict and other Red Sea security challenges. Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Kuwait had built solid economic and political ties following the election victory of Pres. Abdul Fatah Saeed Hussein Khalil al-Sisi in May 2014, with promises of extensive economic support for Egypt as Cairo’s relations with the US Barack Obama Administration withered. But Saudi Arabia and the UAE failed to make good on their promises of economic aid to, and investment in, Egypt, while at the same time the Saudi Government put immense pressure on Egypt to support its military offensive in Yemen. The crisis began over Pres. al-Sisi’s refusal to accept the dominance in the Saudi-Egypt relationship of Saudi Minister of Defense & Aviation and Deputy Crown Prince Prince Mohammed bin […]

Egypt set for a gas turnaround

13 Jan 2017   Egypt

The Egyptian natural gas sector is on track for an about-face, though complex dynamics could keep pressure on the industry, Wood Mackenzie found. Italian energy company Eni in December secured the bulk of the new exploration and production concessions offered by the Egyptian government during the latest bidding round . The company made its initial gas discovery in the Zohr field in August 2015 and quickly described it as the largest ever made in regional waters and potentially the largest in the world. A profile of the Egyptian gas sector from consultant group Wood Mackenzie finds the sector is on pace for a profound change in the next five years. “After swinging from the world’s eighth […]

The Two Nations Racing To Host The Next Oil And Gas Rush

29 Dec 2016   Cyprus, Egypt

Bit of a quiet week for major resource news. But several small items are suggesting some potentially explosive developments coming over the next several months. One of those comes in a place I’ve been watching closely the past year: the tiny Mediterranean island of Cyprus . Which this past week announced the winning bidders for an offshore licensing round — handing out acreage that could be prospective for some of the world’s largest natural gas targets. Cyprus’s Ministry of Energy, Commerce, Industry, and Tourism said it has awarded three offshore blocks — one to Italy’s Eni, one to an Eni/Total partnership, and the other to ExxonMobil and Qatar Petroleum. That’s big news because these licenses lie just kilometers away from Egyptian waters where Eni discovered the 30 trillion-cubic feet Zohr natural gas field — one of the biggest petro-finds in recent history. Eni and a slate of fellow majors […]

Eni gains stronger position in Egypt

29 Dec 2016   Egypt

Italian energy company Eni said it continued its track record of success in the Mediterranean Sea by securing two new agreements in an Egyptian auction. Eni secured the bulk of the new exploration and production concessions offered by the Egyptian government during the latest bidding round. Both agreements cover acreage in the shallow waters of the Mediterranean Sea. Those agreements follow blocks awarded onshore in the Western Desert and in the deep waters of the Mediterranean. “They strengthen Eni’s portfolio and positioning in Egypt, a country of historic and strategic importance, and further confirm the company’s commitment to pursue new exploration,” the company said in a statement . Eni serves as the operator of the two fields in partnerships that include British energy company BP and French supermajor Total as minority players. The company offered no reserve estimate for the new concessions, but […]

Eni to sell 30 percent stake in Egyptian gas field to Rosneft

13 Dec 2016   Egypt

Italian energy company Eni has agreed to sell a 30 percent stake in a giant Egyptian offshore gas field to Russia’s Rosneft for $1.575 billion, pressing ahead with asset sales to fund investment amid weak oil prices. Eni, which currently owns 90 percent of the Shorouk concession containing the giant Zohr gas field, said Rosneft would pay $1.125 billion cash for the stake and would reimburse investments already carried out by Eni for around $450 million. Rosneft also has an option to buy a further 5 percent stake. Selling down stakes in oil and gas fields it operates is part of Eni’s so-called “dual exploration” strategy to raise cash […]

Shell Discovers 500 Billion Cubic Feet of Natural Gas in Egypt’s Western Desert

5 Dec 2016   Egypt

New natural gas discoveries were made earlier this month in Egypt’s western desert, announced Royal Dutch Shell plc, commonly known as Shell. The discoveries were made in Alam El-Shawish concession area. Initial estimates indicate that 500 billion cubic feet of natural gas was discovered, with more possible reserves yet to be uncovered, announced the CEO of Shell in Egypt, Eden Murphy, in a statement. The discovery could produce between 10 and 15 percent of the total production of Badr el-Din Petroleum, which is a joint venture that acts on behalf of Shell and the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation. …The discovery is one of the largest in Egypt’s western desert in recent years…

Egypt: Cairo Governor Raises Taxi Fares Following Increase in Fuel Prices

24 Nov 2016   Egypt

The Cairo Governor announced on Tuesday that taxi fares’ initial charge will increase from EGP 3 to EGP 4, along with an increase in the rate per kilometer from EGP 1.4 to EGP 1.75, in the wake of a surge in the prices of fuel. Taxi drivers called on the cabinet earlier this month to adjust the fare in accordance with the recent hikes in energy and fuel prices. The government raised fuel prices by up to 47 percent on November 4, hours after the Central Bank decided to float the currency. Both measures were seen as part of an economic reform package that aims to reduce the budget deficit and the public debt. According to the Petroleum Ministry, the prices for 80 octane gasoline increased to reach EGP 2.35 per litre instead of EGP 1.6, and 92 octane gasoline increased to EGP 3.5 instead of 2.6 […]

Kuwait Said to Renew Contract to Supply Crude Oil to Egypt

18 Nov 2016   Egypt, Kuwait

Egypt to get 2 million barrels of Kuwaiti crude a month Shipments not meant to make up for Egypt’s loss of Saudi fuel Kuwait renewed a contract to supply Egypt with crude oil for the next three years, according to a senior Kuwaiti government official, who said the shipments are not intended to make up for the loss of Saudi fuel shipments to the North African country. Egypt will get 2 million barrels of Kuwaiti crude a month starting Jan. 1, according to the official, who asked not to be identified because the contract wasn’t announced publicly. The contract is for three years and the supplies will be based on international prices, he said. The contract is an extension of the current agreement between the two countries, the official said. Saudi Arabian Oil Co., known as Saudi Aramco, has halted shipments of oil products to Egypt since October, forcing […]

A Seismic Shift In The Middle East: Saudi Arabia Cuts Off Egyptian Oil

10 Nov 2016   Egypt

While the proxy war in the middle-east rages, a curious, and largely under the radar pivot has been taking place in one of the countries directly impacted by Hillary Clinton’s foreign policy: Egypt. In mid-October, we reported that , for the first time ever, Russia and Egypt would conduct joint military drills. This followed news that Russia will sell attack helicopters to the North African nation and invest billions in Egyptian infrastructure. These items, along with the fact that Egypt is eager to be re-granted Russian tourism rights for its citizens after recent bad blood between the countries, lead one to the logical conclusion that Egypt has every incentive to cooperate with Russia going forward. This means when the Russian fleet reaches the Mediterranean – whether the intent is to park in those waters and bombard Aleppo, as some believe, or merely to project Russian might to the world, […]

Egypt just massively devalued its currency — here’s what happens next

7 Nov 2016   Egypt

Egypt’s central bank floated the pound on Thursday in an attempt to stabilize its economy, which has been hampered by a shortage of dollars. The currency was initially devalued by 32.3% to about 13 pounds per dollar, down from the previous peg of 8.8 per dollar, which had been in place since March. It has since tumbled further, and is now down by about 50%. At the same time, the central bank also hiked rates by 300 basis points in an attempt to curtail the inflation that’s likely to follow the weaker exchange rate. The devaluation of the pound was one of the key demands by the International Monetary Fund in order for Egypt to receive a loan of $12 billion over three years. The IMF has yet to officially ratify the loan, but it is seen as crucial in helping to stabilize the country’s economy. As for what […]

Saudi oil shipments to Egypt halted indefinitely, Egyptian officials say

7 Nov 2016   Egypt, Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia has informed Egypt that shipments of oil products expected under a $23 billion aid deal would be halted indefinitely, suggesting a deepening rift between the Arab world’s richest country and its most populous. Saudi Arabia agreed to provide Egypt with 700,000 tonnes of refined oil products per month for five years in April, during a visit by King Salman. The cargoes stopped arriving at the start of October, as festering political tensions burst into the open, but Egyptian officials said the contract remained valid and had appeared to hold out hope that oil would start flowing again soon. Saudi Arabia’s state oil firm Aramco has not commented on the halt. But […]

Egypt’s oil minister makes rare trip to Iran for oil talks after Saudi suspension

7 Nov 2016   Egypt, Iran

Tarek El Molla, Egypt’s Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, is seen during a meeting with Cypriot Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Nicosia, Cyprus August 31, 2016. Egyptian Petroleum Minister Tarek El Molla was on his way to Iran on Sunday to try to strike new oil deals, sources close to his delegation said at Cairo airport, after Saudi Arabia suspended its oil agreement last month. After that suspension, Egypt voted in favor of a Russian-backed U.N. resolution on Syria in October that excluded calls to stop bombing Aleppo, which Saudi Arabia strongly opposed. Saudi Arabia has showered Egypt with billions of dollars in aid since 2013, when President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi ousted elected Mohammed Mursi of the Muslim Brotherhood and banned the Islamist movement, which Riyadh opposes. The Saudi deal was for 700,000 tonnes of oil products a month for five years […]

Egypt Non-Oil Business Activity Falls to Lowest Since 2013

3 Nov 2016   Egypt

Business activity in Egypt hit its lowest level in more than three years in October, shrinking for a 13th month amid a foreign currency shortage, the pound’s weakness in the black market and accelerating inflation. The Emirates NBD Purchasing Managers Index for non-oil activity fell to 42 from 46.3 the month before, the weakest since July 2013, according to report released Thursday. A level below 50 represents a contraction in business activity. On Thursday morning, free-floated the pound, fulfilling a key condition to finalizing a $12 billion loan from the International Monetary Fund. The survey “highlights the increasingly difficult operating environment confronting Egyptian private sector firms,” Jean-Paul Pigat, senior economist at Emirates NBD, said in the report. “It is difficult to see the situation improving before an IMF agreement is signed, as the ongoing FX shortage and EGP weakness on the parallel market are the main factors undermining economic […]

Egypt Wants Inquiry Into Suspended Saudi Oil Shipments

25 Oct 2016   Egypt

The Energy Committee of the Egyptian Parliament plans to contact its Ministry of Petroleum to get to the bottom of why the petroleum shipment from Aramco was suspended earlier this month. The news came from sources within the Egyptian Parliament, and according to that source, the Ministry will be asked to review Aramco’s five-year agreement to supply Egypt with petroleum derivatives. Egyptian Parliament has reportedly asked Petroleum Minister Tarek El Molla and the chairperson of the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC) to meet with Committee members this Sunday. Hamada Ghallab said that the purpose of the meeting will be to determine why shipments were suspended, and to get an outlook for subsequent shipments in November. Ghallab added that the committee will ask the Ministry of Petroleum to encourage foreign investment in oil fields in order to boost production in exchange for such things as providing facilities, […]

Egypt Presses Oil Companies for More Time to Pay for Fuel

14 Oct 2016   Egypt

Egypt has asked energy suppliers… Egypt is pushing big energy companies to give it a break on payments for fuel shipments after Saudi Arabia’s sudden decision in October to halt artificially cheap petroleum deliveries tightened an economic squeeze in the North African nation. Egypt, one of the biggest global importers of commodities ranging from wheat to diesel fuel, is struggling to pay oil companies ahead of trying to make the world’s largest-ever short-term deal for liquefied-natural gas. At a meeting in Cairo on Wednesday, Egypt asked energy suppliers to give the country six months instead of three months to come up with the money for already-ordered deliveries of LNG, crude oil and petroleum products, an Egyptian government official said. The official didn’t specify which companies were at the meeting. Egypt’s biggest energy suppliers include BP BP -0.31 % PLC, […]

Egypt Says Saudi Fuel Shipment Freeze Is Unrelated to UN Spat

14 Oct 2016   Egypt, Saudi Arabia

Tensions over Syria sparked fears IMF loan would be delayed El-Sisi says oil product shipments are commercial matter Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi said Saudi Aramco’s decision to halt oil product shipments to Egypt wasn’t a retaliation for his government’s position on the war in Syria. The shipments are determined by commercial agreements and “we do not know companies’ circumstances,” El-Sisi was quoted as saying by the state-run Ahram Gate news website on Thursday. “We will take the appropriate position,” he said, without giving further details. Egypt’s support for a Russian-drafted UN Security Council resolution on Syria over the weekend earned a rare public rebuke from Saudi Arabia, which has provided Egypt with billions of dollars in aid since the 2013 ouster of Islamist President Mohamed Mursi. The dispute triggered investor fears that Saudi Arabia would withhold or cancel a $2 billion payment Egypt needed to secure a crucial International […]

Egypt Stocks Fall on Signs of Deepening Rift With Saudi Arabia

12 Oct 2016   Egypt, Saudi Arabia

Suspension of Aramco aid confirmed by Egyptian Oil Ministry Egyptian pound plunges to record in black-market trading Egyptian stocks declined for a second day and the currency fell to a record low on the black market after Saudi Arabia suspended a fuel-aid program, prompting concern among investors of a deeper dispute with one of the country’s key financial backers. The benchmark EGX 30 Index lost 1.6 percent, the most since Sept. 15, to 8,232.77 at the close in Cairo. About 678 million Egyptian pounds ($76 million) of shares traded, 21 percent more than the market’s three-month daily average. The Egyptian pound weakened to its lowest level since the start of a weekly Bloomberg poll of unregulated trading in 2013. The Saudi decision, for which no official reason was announced, follows Egypt’s vote in the United Nations in favor of a Russian-drafted resolution on Syria that the kingdom opposed. Egypt […]

Egypt Begins Receiving Imports From Unspecified Source After Aramco Debacle

12 Oct 2016   Egypt

Egypt received oil shipments from an unspecified source on Tuesday, according to Petroleum Ministry spokesperson Hamdy Abdelaziz, who said the move came after Saudi Aramco decided it would suspend delivery of energy products to the North African country. Abdelaziz said to Mada Masr that this month’s delivery failure “does not mean that the entire import agreement with Aramco will be canceled, since the halt may be due to technical or logistical reasons, which are normal in all economic agreements.” The current deal between Aramco and the Egyptian government brings the equivalent of 700,000 barrels of fuel per month to Egypt at a cost of $23 billion for 15 years. The news site also contacted two different sources from the Saudi company, both of whom chose to remain anonymous. One of the sources said the halt occurred due to technical reasons, but the agreement will still function […]

Saudi Aramco To Suspend Refined Oil To Egypt

11 Oct 2016   Egypt, Saudi Arabia

Saudi Aramco informed Egypt’s state-held Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC) that it would suspend the delivery of refined oil products to Egypt, Reuters reported on Monday, quoting a government official. In April of this year, Saudi Aramco and EGPC entered into a US$23-billion deal , under which Saudi Arabia would deliver to Egypt 700,000 tons of petroleum products per month, as part of financial support for Egypt. Last Friday, October 7, traders had told Reuters that Egypt had not received the October share of petroleum products from Saudi Arabia. On Saturday, October 8, the Egyptian ministry of petroleum issued a statement saying that it had not received any official correspondence from Aramco regarding the status of supplies. EGPC has contracted additional amounts to meet its domestic demand and keep strategic petroleum product stocks, the statement noted. “Aramco informed the EGPC early this month of its inability to supply Egypt […]

Shell announces new natural gas discoveries in Egypt’s Western Desert

1 Sep 2016   Egypt

Logos of Shell is pictured at a gas station in the western Canakkale province, Turkey April 25, 2016. Royal Dutch Shell announced on Wednesday new natural gas discoveries in a concession area of north Alam El-Shawish in Egypt’s western desert. The initial quantities discovered were estimated at about half a trillion cubic feet of gas with more possible reserves, Eden Murphy, chairman and CEO of Shell said in a statement. The discovery could produce from 10 to 15 percent of the total production of Badr el-Din Petroleum company, which is a joint venture acting on behalf of the state-owned Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC) and Shell in production operations, Murphy added. Shell owns the license of the entire area, which includes the well. Badr el-Din is expected to manage the operations. (Reporting by Alaa Roushdy; Editing by Ruth Pitchford)

Fuel Subsidy Regime Falls Like Dominoes Across Middle East

26 Aug 2016   Egypt

Two weeks ago, news broke that the International Monetary Fund had reached a “tentative” agreement with Egyptian officials regarding a $12 billion loan that the Washington-based pool would pay out over the next three years. The IMF’s Egypt mission chief, Chris Jarvis, said, “Egypt is a strong country with great potential but it has some problems that need to be fixed urgently.” One of those problems, it turns out, is the country’s fuel subsidies. Reuters reported on Tuesday that Egyptians will pay 65 percent of the actual cost of fuel at pumps during the 2016-17 fiscal year, and by the time the IMF distributes the last portions of its massive loan in 2020, the fuel subsidies will be completely dismantled. To be clear, the fuel subsidy cuts do not represent a new political position in Egypt. In October 2014, Acting President Adly Mansour released a five-year […]

Egypt plans to end fuel subsidies within three years: sources

24 Aug 2016   Egypt

Egypt plans to end fuel subsidies within three years and is aiming to increase fuel prices to 65 percent of their actual cost during the 2016/17 fiscal year, two government sources told Reuters on Tuesday. Struggling to revive its economy after an uprising in 2011 shook investor confidence and drove tourists and foreign investors away, Egypt has been trying to cut spending on subsidies because they eat into its state budget. Egypt has reached a staff level agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for a $12 billion three-year loan program which is subject to final approval by the IMF executive committee. Disbursement is linked to progress on a variety of reforms including cuts in subsidies, the introduction of value-added tax (VAT) and a shift to a more flexible exchange rate regime. “What was agreed lately with the IMF delegation in Egypt is cancelling fuel subsidies within three years,” […]

Offshore Egypt a win for Schlumberger

22 Jun 2016   Egypt

With pressure on the sector easing, a subsidiary of field services company Schlumberger said it secured a multi-million dollar contract for offshore Egypt. Schlumberger, which has headquarters in Houston, is the largest oil and gas field services in the world. Its subsidiary, OneSubsea, secured a $170 million contract from Belayim Petroleum Co., an Egyptian player known also as Petrobel, for help with the development of the Zohr natural gas field off the coast of Egypt. According to OneSubsea President Mike Garding, the Zohr field is the largest of its kind discovered in the Mediterranean Sea. In March, OneSubsea secured a contract from BP for work on a complex of West Nile Delta fields off the coast of Egypt. On Monday, BP […]

BP Sanctions Atoll Phase One Project in Egypt

21 Jun 2016   Egypt

BP sanctions the development of the Atoll Phase One project in Egypt. BP announced Monday that, together with the Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company (EGAS), it has sanctioned the development of the Atoll Phase One project in Egypt. The project is an early production scheme that will bring up to 300 million cubic feet per day gross of gas to the Egyptian domestic gas market, starting in the first half of 2018. BP has a 100 percent interest in the concession. “BP is proud to progress the acceleration of the Atoll project which will bring critical gas to the Egyptian market and establish a new material hub offshore East Nile Delta,” said Hesham Mekawi, regional president, BP North Africa, in a company statement. “Our confidence in the prospectivity of the area along with our ongoing commitment to Egypt and our successful history of partnership with the Ministry of Petroleum, […]

BP moving fast on Egyptian gas

21 Jun 2016   Egypt

British energy company BP said Monday it was putting a deepwater natural gas project in Egypt on the fast track to development. BP and its regional partner, the Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Co., sanctioned a fast-track scheme to bring 300 million cubic feet of natural gas per day to the domestic Egyptian market from the deepwater Atoll development by the first half of 2018. “BP is proud to progress the acceleration of the Atoll project which will bring critical gas to the Egyptian market,” BP Regional President Hesham Mekawi said in a statement. BP at one time produced almost 40 percent of the oil in Egypt through its regional partnerships and nearly 30 percent […]

Eni and BP Make “Significant” Gas Discovery in Egypt

10 Jun 2016   Egypt

A new natural gas discovery on the coast of Egypt’s Nile Delta has been made by Eni and British Petroleum (BP). The two companies own a 50-50 share of the Baltim South license, the area of the delta in which the “significant” discovery occurred, a statement by Eni said. Over the last year, several finds in the area have ramped up oil and natural gas investment in the vastly energy-importing country. The “super giant” Zohr discovery occurred last August. At the time, it represented the largest natural gas find in the Mediterranean Sea, according to Eni’s press release. The Nooros field was found last July. Both finds – but especially Zohr – put Egypt on track to be energy independent in the next two years as they come online by the end of 2017. Zohr alone will produce the equivalent of 40 percent of Egypt total natural […]

Egypt to Increase NatGas Production by 30% by 2019

25 May 2016   Egypt

Natural Gas Exports Riding high on a series of major discoveries and what appears to be renewed investor interest in Egypt’s energy sector, the Oil Ministry is now targeting a 30-percent increase in natural gas production by 2019. Egypt’s oil minister has announced a new plan to raise its natural gas production to 5.5-6 billion cubic feet per day (980 million to 1.1 billion barrels a day) by the end of 2019 in line with global demand forecasts. It’s an important goal for Egypt, which has become a net oil and gas importer since oil prices started to crash in mid-2014. But recent discoveries have revived Egypt’s energy status and should spur these ambitious goals along. Twelve natural gas fields in the North African country are undergoing development as part of a set of projects estimated to be worth US$33 billion. The Zohr gas field, discovered by the Italian […]

Israel, Egypt Said Nearing Compromise on Natural Gas Dispute

Israel and Egypt are close to a compromise that would sweep away a major obstacle to a multibillion-dollar natural gas deal. (Bloomberg) – Israel and Egypt are close to a compromise that would sweep away a major obstacle to a multibillion-dollar natural gas deal. Israel may agree to settle for half of the $1.73 billion fine Egypt was ordered to pay it so talks on exporting Israeli offshore gas there can go ahead, two people familiar with the negotiations said, requesting anonymity because the talks are private. Payments would be spread over 14 years, one of the people said. Negotiations are still under way, and authorities in both countries would have to approve any final figure, the people familiar said. State-owned Israel Electric Corp., which had sought the award from Egypt, and the Egyptian Foreign Ministry declined to comment. Energy stocks climbed. Israel has painted gas exports to Egypt […]

More gas for Eni coming out of Egypt

12 May 2016   Egypt

Italian energy company Eni said Wednesday it was able to boost its production at a gas field in Egypt within a year of making the initial discovery. Eni said production from an exploration well in the Nooros field was up to about 65,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day, a level reached 10 months after the initial discovery in the Nile Delta region of Egypt. The company said the next benchmark would be to double that level by the end of the year by drilling additional wells. The Italian company said the production milestone “further confirms Eni’s near field exploration strategy oriented on high-value activities, which, thanks to the existing infrastructures, allows the fast development of the findings.” Eni […]

Eni Hopes To Develop Supergiant Gas Field By 2017

22 Apr 2016   Egypt

Egypt offers a bright spot for natural gas development, a lone bright spot in an energy world undergoing harsh austerity. The friendly business environment in Egypt right now stems, in part, from a painful shortage in energy. Egypt has suffered blackouts due to shortages in natural gas, and has been scrambling to make up for the shortfall. Natural gas prices are regulated, and the state gas company, EGAS, has offered generous prices for gas in order to attract investment. The Financial Times reports that the blackouts have eased a bit since 2015. But a more enduring solution could soon arrive as Italian oil giant Eni develops the gigantic Zohr natural gas discovery in the Mediterranean Sea. The field could hold 30 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, enough to make it the largest gas discovery ever recorded in the Mediterranean. Eni announced the discovery in the summer of 2015, […]

Egypt SuMed Pipeline Yet to Accept Iranian Oil After Sanctions

3 Mar 2016   Egypt, Iran

Egypt and Gulf Arab crude producers have yet to let Saudi Arabia’s regional rival Iran resume oil shipments through a pipeline they operate to supply customers in Europe and the Mediterranean Sea region, more than a month after international sanctions against Iran were lifted. Arab Petroleum Pipelines Co., which operates the link known as SuMed, is still reviewing terms of the agreement that removed sanctions on Iran in January, according to a company official. The operator is seeking to ensure Iran complies with sanctions regulations before resuming oil shipments halted since August 2012, said the official, who asked not to be identified, citing company policy. Egyptian General Petroleum Corp. owns 50 percent of SuMed, which connects the Red Sea with the Mediterranean. State-run Saudi Arabian Oil Co., known as Aramco, owns 15 percent of the link; International Petroleum Investment Co. of the United Arab Emirates, 15 percent; three Kuwaiti […]

BP laying groundwork offshore Egypt

27 Feb 2016   Egypt

Danish engineering company Subsea 7 said it was awarded a contract to help BP develop three gas fields, including laying export lines, off the coast of Egypt. For an undisclosed sum, Subsea 7 landed contracts to assist with development of the Giza, Fayoum and Raven fields off the coast of Egypt. The terms of the contract include engineering support from 12 wells in the offshore sector, which includes export lines feeding a nearby port terminal. BP’s Egyptian subsidiary last year took greater control over regional acreage through a deal with Germany energy company DEA Deutsche Erdoel. The acquisition gave BP an 82.75 percent stake in concessions in the West Nile Delta. BP said it will […]

Eni cleared to develop Zohr gas basin in Egypt

23 Feb 2016   Egypt

talian energy company Eni said it received consent from the Egyptian government to lay the groundwork for developing a giant offshore gas basin. Eni said received word from the Egyptian Ministry of Petroleum that the state Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Co. has granted it a development lease for the Zohr offshore field. “The development plan envisages the start of production by the end of 2017, just two years after the discovery, with a progressive ramp up until reaching a volume of about (500,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day) by 2019,” the company said in a statement. Eni made its initial gas discovery in the Zohr field in August and quickly described it […]

Egypt Said to Get $20 Billion of Oil Products From Saudi Arabia

25 Jan 2016   Egypt, Saudi Arabia

Egypt will get about $20 billion in oil products from Saudi Arabia over five years, a government official said, marking the kingdom’s latest display of support for its struggling North African ally. The deal grants Egypt easy payment terms, said the official, who asked not to be named because the agreement details will be made public at a ceremony attended by both heads of state. Saudi Arabia’s oil ministry couldn’t immediately be reached for comment. The two countries also finalized a 3-month oil deal worth $1.5 billion that both sides were negotiating earlier this month, the official said. That deal is part of the 5-year agreement. The agreement is the latest in a series of Saudi pledges of economic support for Egypt, even as the oil-rich kingdom cuts subsidies to shore up its finances. Saudi Arabia, along with Kuwait and the U.A.E., poured tens of billions into Egypt to […]

Stuck at sea, BP’s LNG shipment highlights Egypt’s payment struggle

22 Jan 2016   Egypt

BP’s diversion of a tanker of liquefied natural gas (LNG) away from Egypt due to payment issues is the first sign that the country’s currency crisis could be jeopardizing its energy supplies, traders said. Earlier this month the tanker British Sapphire was diverted to Brazil rather than discharging in Egypt, with the delivery of the LNG cargo for Egypt delayed up until October, traders said. BP declined to comment. Egypt’s state-owned EGAS was not available to comment. Egypt has been struggling to pay for U.S. dollar-priced oil products and LNG due to an acute foreign currency crisis, worsened by the Russian airliner disaster in October, which hit tourism revenue. Last year Egypt became a major market for LNG shippers such as BP and Europe’s elite commodity merchants after the startup of two import terminals, but […]

Egypt, Ethiopia, Sudan: Governments Sign Agreement Over Dam

30 Dec 2015   Egypt, Ethiopia, Sudan

Leaders from Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan have signed an agreement designed to assuage Egyptian worries over the construction of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, Egyptian Streets reported Dec. 29. Egypt previously expressed concern over the dam’s storage capacity and its effect on Egyptian water security and energy production by Egypt’s Aswan High Dam. The new agreement, based on a preliminary deal the countries reached in March, stipulates that a French consulting firm will conduct research into the environmental impacts of the dam. Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt are all reliant on the water of the Nile, but as upstream nations, Ethiopia and Sudan have a distinct geopolitical advantage. Stratfor provides global awareness and guidance to individuals, governments and businesses around the world. We use a unique, intel-based approach to analyze world affairs. Copyright © 2015 Stratfor Global Intelligence, All rights reserved. Our mailing address is: 221 West 6th Street Suite […]

Israel approves natural gas exports to Egypt

25 Dec 2015   Egypt, Israel

Dec 24 Israel’s government has given the go ahead to begin exporting natural gas to Egypt, signalling a potential improvement in relations between two countries which have been at loggerheads over energy supplies. Israel will be able to sell 5 billion cubic meters (bcm) of gas to Egypt in the coming seven years from the Tamar site off its Mediterranean coast, Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz said in a statement on Thursday. “After years of delay and debate, we are starting to move forward and to position Israel as a regional natural gas power,” he said. Israel, long an importer of gas, has seen its fortunes transformed by big gas discoveries such as the Tamar field. Egypt had been selling gas to Israel under a 20-year agreement, but that collapsed in 2012 after months of attacks on the pipeline by militants in Egypt’s remote Sinai peninsula. An international arbitrator this […]

Israeli companies keen on Egyptian gas deal

9 Dec 2015   Egypt, Israel

Companies working in the Israel energy sector said they’re still pursing commercial deals in Egypt despite reports of a breakdown in talks. Egyptian media outlet Ahram Online reported during the weekend the government in Cairo announced plans to suspend negotiations between companies working to bring Israeli gas into the domestic market. The suspension followed word that state-owned Egyptian General Petroleum Corp. and Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Co. would appeal a multibillion dollar penalty ordered from international arbiters ruling on the collapse of 2012 Israeli gas export deal. Delek Group, one of the parties to proposed export deals, said it was not involved in arbitration proceedings with Egyptian gas companies. In response to various media reports on the freeze in the talks, the company […]

Egypt’s Dollar Crunch Siphoning Steam From Renewable Energy Plan

20 Nov 2015   Egypt

Egypt’s foreign-currency crunch has solar developers concerned about financing new power plants. Cairo Solar has lined up a $51 million loan from the International Finance Corp. for a planned 50-megawatt solar farm. Chairman Hisham Tawfik says he’s worried about paying it back because the government has guaranteed payment for the electricity it will produce — in Egyptian pounds. It’s been more than four years since the uprising that toppled President Hosni Mubarak. The political upheaval has scared away outside investors and tourists, and Egypt’s foreign reserves have dwindled to $16.6 billion, less than half 2010 levels. The central bank has imposed restrictions that make Tawfik’s pounds difficult to convert to other currencies. “How can I be happy if I have a lot of Egyptian pounds in the bank and I can’t change them to dollars,” Tawfik, who is also on the board of the Egyptian Renewable Energy Association, said […]

Eni focus on Egypt sharpens

13 Oct 2015   Egypt

Italian energy company Eni said it was building on a legacy position in Mediterranean waters with two new shallow-water concessions offshore Egypt. Eni takes a position alongside British energy company BP and French company Total in the shallow-water Karawan and North Leil blocks off the Egyptian coast. Eni offered no estimate of the reserve potential in the two exploration areas, which combine for 1,280 square miles. The Italian company will serve as the operator of the two basins. “These two new concession agreements follow the recent award of the deep water Karawan and North Leil blocks, strengthening Eni’s presence in Egypt, a country of historic and strategic importance,” the Italian company noted. Eni announced a discovery of gas in a deepwater prospect […]

Eni, BP take licenses offshore Egypt in 2015 bid round

13 Oct 2015   Egypt

Eni SPA and BP PLC have been awarded exploration rights to the 1,927-sq-km Block 4 and 1,389-sq-km Block 7 offshore Egypt following the 2015 Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Co. (Egas) bid round.BP will operate Block 4, or North Ras El Esh, where interest is split 50-50 between BP and Eni. Eni will operate Block 7, known as North El Hammad, with 37.5% interest while BP will have 37.5%. Total SA is the third partner for Block 7, holding 25%.

BP also was awarded Block 14, North El Tabya; and Italy’s Edison SPA was awarded Block 12, Northeast Hapy, according to a statement from Egypt’s petroleum ministry. Blocks 4 and 7 will be managed on behalf of Eni by affiliate International Egyptian Oil Co. (IEOC). Both blocks are in the shallow waters of the Mediterranean Sea, facing the Nile Delta and southwest of the Temsah area and west of the Baltim area, where Eni operates existing fields and production facilities (OGJ Online, Apr. 22, 2013).

Click here to view full article at