Minister: Egypt can be one of main gas producers

Mena, Thursday 20 Jan 2011

The Egyptian energy minister says that with potential natural gas reserves of over 300 trillion cubic feet, Egypt could become top producer

"Egypt is a candidate to increase its reserves of natural gas to become one of the biggest producers worldwide," said Energy Minister Sameh Fahmy in a press conference today.

The minister assured that there are a number of international reports highlighting the existence of important natural gas reserves in the East Mediterranean, where Egypt shares some gas fields with neighboring countries. The reserves of those fields are estimated at 122 trillion cubic feet.

According to the minister, Egypt has78 trillion cubic feet of gas reserves, in addition to 228 trillion cubic feet that internationals reports say exists in fields in the Delta and offshore across from the North Delta.

"There are also other reserves in the Western Desert, the Suez Gulf, and Upper Egypt that can allow Egyptian reserves to exceed 300 trillion cubic feet and make it one of the biggest countries in term of production and reserves," he added.

In the upcoming weeks, the minister will visit a number of Nile Valley countries in order to promote further cooperation in the fields of oil, gas and mining. On the level of Arabic cooperation, Egypt is set to host a meeting of the Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries (OAPEC) in March.

Fahmy also underlined that Egypt has been able to modify many petroleum and gas extraction agreements, getting foreign companies who invest in Egypt to assume all coasts of petroleum exploration and excavation work.

"Many international companies working in Egypt increased their investments in excavation and exploration work in spite of the financial crisis, which show the confidence in Egypt's capacity thanks to the existence of many studies assuring that those possibilities exists," said the minister, adding that British Petroleum is set to invest $9 bn over the next three years in Egypt's oil and gas exploration sector.

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