Egypt to keep Eni's find for itself, stiffening gas race in the Middle East: "Egypt plans to keep all the natural gas produced at a giant field Eni SpA found off its Mediterranean coast to itself, heightening competition among gas producers in the Middle East and Africa.
“This field is now in competition with the ones in Cyprus, Israel, Mozambique, Tanzania and Iran,” Thierry Bros, an analyst at Societe Generale SA in Paris, said Tuesday by e-mail. “But as we are short of growing demand, especially in Europe, and short of money, only projects that will find a win-win solution with buyers will go ahead.”
Eni on Sunday said the deep-water deposit in the Zohr Prospect in the Shorouk block may hold 30 trillion cubic feet of fuel, making it the biggest gas discovery in the Mediterranean Sea. “All the production will go to internal consumption,” Hamdy Abdel Aziz, director of the Egyptian Petroleum Ministry’s information department, said by phone from Cairo. The field’s reserves can meet Egypt’s needs for more than 10 years, he said.
Gas output in Egypt has been declining since 2011 as the uprising that ended Hosni Mubarak’s rule curtailed investments in exploration and production. Local demand for electricity, most of it generated by gas, is rising by more than 7% a year, and the most populous Arab nation, with almost 87 million people, started buying liquefied natural gas cargoes this year from companies including Noble Group Ltd, BP Plc and Vitol SA."
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