Do we share Egypt’s luck?

تم نشره في Sun 6 September / Sep 2015. 09:32 AM - آخر تعديل في Sun 6 September / Sep 2015. 09:32 AM

By Jumana Ghunaimat

With the announcement by the Italian energy company Eni of the discovery of a giant natural gas field off the coast of Egypt, the largest in the Mediterranean, Egypt is liberated from a draft agreement it has not signed yet, to import gas from Israel. It saves Cairo an embarrassment evident in the controversy derived from the popular rejection to import gas from the enemy.

Egypt has been lucky with this historic discovery, after drilling to 1450 meters below the sea level. Drilling continued to a depth of 4131 meters and the results indicated that the amount of gas is unprecedented. The field contains up to 30 trillion cubic feet of gas, making it one of the largest discoveries in history as well.

Jordan was one of those affected by the Egyptian gas crisis; it was reflected on the Cairo’s fulfilment of the gas agreement between the two countries, which stated Jordan would have access to 400 million cubic feet of Egyptian gas daily, which did not happen. The flow dropped until it reached zero at times, or declined to very low numbers, sending the Kingdom into a major crisis.

In light of Egypt’s, and the political rapprochement between the two countries, it seems useful for Jordan to reconsider its calculations. Instead of the public-rejected Israeli gas agreement, and most importantly economically unviable, the state must think of the Egyptian gas and the implementation of an agreement that froze years ago. Keeping in mind that gas extraction in Egypt and Israel needs years, giving a new option to the Jordanian decision-maker; cancel the agreement with Israel and the move towards Egypt.

Egypt’s luck with this great discovery will change the map of natural gas in the “Mediterranean”, which explains the panic that grips the Israeli government since the announcement of the new field. After all, Israel has become concerned about the fate of the agreements it has been pressing to sign to export gas to both Egypt and Jordan.

As a result, Egypt is lucky because the gas discovery came at an important moment for the present and future of the country. It also came in his time, to give a formal justification to both the Jordanians and the Egyptians, to stop thinking of importing gas from Israel, and to avoid all the negative and dangerous consequences that could follow that step.



This article is an edited translation from the Arabic edition