Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz on Monday signed a deal to export Israeli natural gas to Egypt. In a statement, the Energy Ministry said that “after all the processes and steps were completed on the professional level, the authorization to go ahead with the deal was received, based on the recommendations of government agencies, including those that regulate marketplace competition.”
Egypt is the first international customer for natural gas from Israel, which will include gas from the Leviathan gas field, which is scheduled to enter production next month. Under the deal, Israel will export a total of 60 billion cubic meters (BCM) of gas from Leviathan over the next 15 years, as well as 25 BCM from the Tamar field over that period. Between 2020 and 2034, some 26 billion BCM of that gas will go to Egypt, based on the arrangement between the Israeli licensees of the fields and the Egyptian company authorized to purchase the gas.
Steinitz said that the signing of the deal marked a red-letter day for Israel. “For the first time, Israel is now an energy exporter, and is an important part of the region’s energy economy. The export of gas from the Tamar and Leviathan fields is the most important economic arrangement between the two countries since the peace treaty between us was signed,” Steinitz said.