File photo: Egypt's Zohr gas field (Photo: Courtesy of Eni Company Official Website)
Egypt will launch the first international tender for oil and gas exploration in the Red Sea next month, a petroleum official has said.
The government is now conducting a seismic study off the country's eastern coast to identify areas of prospective resources, Mohamed Abdel-Azim, head of the state-owned South Valley Egyptian Petroleum Holding Company, was quoted as saying by state news agency MENA.
The company has been working with US firm Schlumberger to carry out 2D seismic surveys of more than 10,000 square kilometres in Egypt's exclusive economic zone (EEZ) in the Red Sea, he added.
A maritime demarcation accord signed with Saudi Arabia in 2016 has allowed the country to embark on oil and gas exploration for the first time in the Red Sea.
Petroleum Minister Tarek El-Molla said the region, except for the Gulf of Suez, had remained "untouched" by exploration.