Oil multinationals bid for Upper Egypt gas fields

Ahram Online, Tuesday 19 Mar 2013

Several oil multinationals show interest in launching exploration and drilling activities in Upper Egypt, says chairman of state-run Ganoub El-Wadi petroleum holding company (GANOPE)

The Egyptian government has invited top oil multinationals to bid for exploration licenses in sites located in Upper Egypt known for being rich in natural gas and petroleum, Sherif Ismail, chairman of the state-owned Ganoub El-Wadi petroleum holding company (GANOPE), told Al-Ahram daily newspaper.

Several multinationals have already submitted exploration and drilling proposals, showcasing that Egypt has the potential of attracting foreign investments, despite the current state of political uncertainty that has hit the country, explained Ismail.

"The government's offer has attracted an overwhelming number of oil companies both foreign and local, and companies are currently assessing the financial and technical costs of drilling projects in the area," said Abu Bakr Ibrahim, vice president of GANOPE for drilling and exploration.

During a recent visit to Egypt's Sohag, one of Upper Egypt's most prominent cities, President Mohamed Morsi said his government is working to put an end to ongoing developmental and economic woes in Upper Egypt and promised to focus on job creation efforts.

In an effort to meet Egypt's growing fuel needs, the government sealed an agreement in early March with Iraq to build crude oil pipelines between the two countries. 

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