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Egypt's gas exports fall 81.4% in September

Natural gas exports continue to drop as more production is used to meet Egypt's rising electricity demands

Ahram Online, Thursday 13 Nov 2014
Oil
Photo: Reuters
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Egypt's exports of natural gas in September declined 81.4 percent compared to the same period last year, the state-run Information and Decision Support Centre (IDSC) reported on Thursday.

The value of exports totalled $18.1 million, compared to $97.1 million in September 2013.

Meanwhile, natural gas production fell 12.2 percent lower than its September 2013 level, totalling 3.01 million tonnes of natural gas, compared to 3.4 million in the same month of the previous year.

Electric power generation accounted for some 68.7 percent of natural gas consumption, up from 59.6 percent a year before, reflecting Egypt's efforts to meet rising domestic demands for electricity.

"There have been no new concessions in the period from 2010 to 2013, which resulted in decreasing exploration areas to only 27 blocks during 2013, down from 53 in 2010," the minister of petroleum, Sherif Ismail, said earlier this week.

Delays in explorations are a result of mounting debts to foreign oil and gas companies following the 2011 uprising that toppled president Hosni Mubarak.

Gas producers currently receive about $2.65 per 1,000 cubic feet, far below the prices paid in the North Sea and elsewhere, reported Reuters last month. But Ismail said this week that the ministry plans to free prices in one of several attempts to encourage explorations.

Exports of crude oil and other petroleum products were valued at $321 million, down 20 percent from $401 million in September 2013.

Meanwhile, domestic consumption of petroleum products rose 26.1 percent year-on-year to 3.2 million tonnes.

The United Arab Emirates pledged $9 billion worth of petroleum products starting in September, to be sent over a year.

Egypt's production of Brent crude and petroleum condensates, such as gas oil and naphtha, dipped by 1.5 percent year-on-year in September to reach 2.9 million tonnes, according to the IDSC.

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