El Molla: Cooperation Essential to Secure Energy’s Future

Cooperation between countries is a must to overcome the Covid-19 pandemic and its repercussions on the energy future and secure energy needs, Tarek El Molla, Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, stated during the Abu Dhabi International Petroleum Exhibition Conference (ADIPEC).

The minister reviewed Egypt’s energy strategies to improve dialogue between producing, consuming, and transit countries in the East Mediterranean region and their success in forming the East Mediterranean Gas Forum (EMGF). The minister also pointed out that Egypt has signed 14 exploration and production (E&P) agreements with several IOCs during the pandemic, and brought Chevron and ExxonMobil to work in Egypt; bringing a total of 60 IOCs operating in the country’s 164 concession areas.

El Molla added that with the reforms made in the past six years, Egypt has become a natural gas exporter and regained international oil companies’ (IOCs) trust to invest in the Egyptian market. Not only that, but the ministry has succeeded also in capitalizing on natural gas and using it in power stations, households, and for car fuel. 

Such reforms stood up against the pandemic as Egypt became the only country in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region that was able to score a positive economic growth in fiscal year (FY) 2019/20, El Molla noted. In line with the state’s strategy, the petroleum sector has taken bold steps to ensure securing energy resources, support investment opportunities, achieve financial sustainability, and boost Egypt’s economic growth. El Molla took pride in the sector’s role in boosting the economy with EGP 1.2 trillion in investments during the period from 2014 to 2020. 

Elaborating on the sector’s achievements, El Molla stated that 86 agreements were signed with IOCs in the past six years with a commitment to spend about $15 billion. Production rates have also jumped recording a milestone of 1.9 million barrels of oil equivalent per day (mmbbloe/d) in August 2019. In addition, the ministry will launch Egypt Upstream Gateway (EUG), which is a digital platform to ensure the transparency of Egypt’s geological data and to promote the ministry’s bid rounds.