Egypt will announce the winners on Tuesday of its latest exploration and production (E&P) bidding rounds even as regional energy ministers call for increased investment in the oil and gas sector.
Speaking at the Egypt Petroleum Show (EGYPS), His Excellency Tarek EI Molla, Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources for Egypt said the country having already started multiple oil and gas investment projects, has more ambitions that will see exploration and production pick up.
“We are working on many exploration partnership projects and are active in bid rounds.
We will announce EGPC bid rounds - there were launched in 2018 and we were able to finalize them,” El Molla said on Monday during a Ministerial Session at EGYPS.
An increasing number of power plants switching to gas in Egypt, a country which halted gas imports last year to become self-sufficient.
However, the country still needs to import crude oil. “We have very ambitions plans for exploration in western desert, Mediterranean and the Red Sea, which needs focus on investments from international companies,” Egypt’s El Molla added.
Meanwhile, the previous energy source - fuel oil, has created demand for more refineries. Several refinery projects are ongoing across the country as well, and are in different levels of execution, he said.
His Excellency Shaikh Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Khalifa, Ministry of Oil, Kingdom of Bahrain, also on the Ministerial Session panel at EGYPS said Egypt has set an example for other countries to follow as it conducts reforms to attract international investment from oil and gas companies.
“The ability to attract international companies with the right environment… has been a struggle for Egypt but is a successful model. People have started to see the under-investment in oil and gas. Egypt presents a good example as the world needs more affordable energy,” he said.
H.E. Al Khalifa said Bahrain said new technology will play an important role in the oil and gas sector as “the world is running out of cheap oil, which means you have to apply new technology to find ways to extract tough oil.”
Meanwhile, he said refineries need to be upgraded due to pressure from tight margins.
“You have no choice but to invest if you want to continue in this industry. If you don’t upgrade refineries, they will need to be shutdown,” he said, adding that Bahrain is looking at investing in a petrochemical plant, even as it studies new technology to convert fuel oil to diesel.