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Egypt has recently announced its crude oil production has exceeded 650,000 barrels per day (bpd) for the first time since the late 1950s, Al-Monitor reports, quoting Egypt’s Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources Tarek el-Molla.
Egypt’s General Petroleum Company will aim to boost the development of new oil wells and infrastructure, Tarek el-Molla said at the general meeting of the company which he presided earlier this month.
Most of Egypt’s crude oil production comes from the Western Desert region, 56 percent, followed by the Gulf of Suez with 23 percent, the Eastern Desert accounts for 12 percent of Egypt’s current oil production, and the Sinai Peninsula represents 9 percent of output.
Egypt currently produces some 1.1 billion cubic feet of gas per day and almost 700,000 bpd of crude oil, after having developed production fields in the Gulf of Suez, Atef Hassan, head of one of the local companies, Petrobel, told Al-Monitor.
Egypt’s crude oil production numbers are modest, but its waters in the Mediterranean hold the largest natural gas discovery in the Mediterranean Sea, the giant Zohr field which began production two years ago.
Following the start-up of the Zohr field in early 2018, Egypt became an essential player in the Mediterranean. Zohr has played a crucial role in helping Egypt to avoid the need to import liquefied natural gas (LNG).
In recent years, Egypt has been at the center of a ‘natural gas rush’ in the Eastern Mediterranean after Italy’s Eni discovered the Zohr field in 2015, saying it was the largest ever gas discovery in the Mediterranean.
Earlier this month, Eni and BP announced a new gas discovery in the Mediterranean, in the waters of the Nile Delta.
In one of the latest deals concerning the Eastern Mediterranean, U.S. supermajor Chevron will scoop up Noble Energy’s natural gas assets offshore Israel and Cyprus after it entered into a definitive agreement to buy Houston-based Noble Energy in an all-stock transaction valued at US$5 billion.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.
Since the discovery of the giant Zohr gasfield, the largest discovered in the East Mediterranean, Egypt has been enjoying an energy renaissance and has become an energy focus for some of the world’s major oil and gas companies.
Gas production from the Zohr field hasn’t only played a crucial role in helping Egypt to avoid the need to import LNG but is reverting it into a gas exporter. Furthermore, Egypt has now emerged as the energy hub of the Eastern Mediterranean.
Dr Mamdouh G Salameh
International Oil Economist
Visiting Professor of Energy Economics at ESCP Europe Business School, London