Coming soon: new bid for exploration of Egyptian shale gas

National flag of Egypt
Source: DollarPhotoClub

An official close to the Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company (EGAS) told The Daily News Egypt that the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC) will hold a special bid for exploration and production of shale gas in four areas in the Western Desert.

EGPC – which has the jurisdiction in the are – is yet to decide on a date for the bid.

It is believed that EGAS aimed to obtain two regions in the Western Desert, but authorities issued approvals for four. Within the areas offered in the upcoming bid there will be included sites where Shell and Apache have already conducted shale production trials.

Shell Egypt President Jeroen Regtien said in previous statements made to Al-Borsa that that shale gas production trials will begin this month in the Apollonia area in the Western Desert with Apache.

The new shale exploration agreements will be for the duration in excess of twenty years, and the prices will be set depending on whether gas is produced from surface, deep water, or shallow waters.

In previous statements, Minister of Petroleum Sherif Ismail has said that his ministry plans to launch an international tender for shale gas extraction by the end of this year.

According to EIA estimates, Egypt has 100 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of technically recoverable shale gas. This is significant as Egypt is in need of gas. Egypt produces around 4.75bn cubic feet of gas per day while actual market requirements total approximately 6bn cubic feet per day.

The Ministry of Petroleum is hoping that shale gas from the Western Desert will compensate for the shortfall.

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