Egypt's Petroleum Minister Tareq El-Molla asserted on Monday that the country's natural gas market is rapidly growing, adding that Egypt has the potential to become a regional energy hub.
The minister was speaking at the Abu Dhabi International Petroleum Exhibition and Conference (ADIPEC), which kicked off in Abu Dhabi under the slogan 'Shaping the Future of the Oil and Gas Industry,' with the participation of 100 representatives from oil ministries around the globe and chief executives of global oil companies.
In a ministerial session titled 'Reshaping markets and continuing to discuss the world's energy situation,' El-Molla clarified that a number of steps have been taken in this regard, including the formation of a government committee to develop a specific strategy to turn Egypt into a regional power hub, and the issuance of a new natural gas law.
He highlighted a memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed with the European Union (EU) to support a strategic energy partnership, in addition to inking several agreements with neighboring countries such as Cyprus, Jordan and Iraq to maximise the benefits from gas discoveries in the region.
He also cited strong cooperation with Greece in the oil and natural gas industry.
On the technical and trade levels, he added that the country is working on implementing several mega-projects in the areas of refining, petrochemicals and infrastructure to serve the main goal of transforming Egypt into a regional energy hub.
The minister shed light on ongoing cooperation with global oil companies working in gas exploration to make good use of untapped resources in the Mediterranean.
At the economic level, he added that Egypt seeks to utilise its infrastructure to re-export gas after it is liquefied to Europe, which in turn could contribute to increasing the country's revenues.
The minister stressed continued partnership with the EU in the domain of energy to benefit from available opportunities and overcome challenges facing the region.
Cairo could play a role in making a great leap to the use of clean energy in the Eastern Mediterranean region, which will help bring about the objectives of the 2015 Paris Climate Change Agreement, notably the reduction of emissions around the world, the minister noted.