Egypt's Natural Gas Holding Company (EGAS) signed a new oil agreement on Thursday with Italy’s Edison to explore and produce oil and natural gas in the Mediterranean Sea worth more than US$86 million.
The agreement was signed by Egypt’s Petroleum Minister Tarek El-Molla, EGAS Chairman Mohamed El Masry and Vice President for Edison’s E&P activities for Egypt and the Middle East Maurizio Coratella.
The agreed investments included a signature bonus of $1.5 million to drill two exploration wells in North East Haby area in the Mediterranean Sea.
El-Molla asserted that the ministry concluded all agreements reached through the latest international bid issued by EGAS.
The minister affirmed that signing more oil exploration agreements would boost global investments in Egypt as EGAS is set to issue a new bid within 2017.
On Thursday, Italian energy company Eni announced its plans to increase its energy exploration investments in Egypt to $3.5 billion in 2017.
In late December, Eni signed two new concession agreements with the Egyptian government for gas exploration in two Mediterranean fields.
Egypt’s production of natural gas is currently estimated at around 4.4 billion cubic feet per day (bcfd), and is expected to increase by 1.5 bcfd by the end of 2017, according to a statement from the Ministry of Petroleum last week.
In May 2016, the ministry expected production to range between 5.5 and 6 bcfd by the end of 2019.