Organized by the Swedish Embassy in Cairo, the Europe-Egypt Energy Interconnectivity event kicked off with the attendance of Tarek El Molla, Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources and several other notables in the government and corporate world who are involved in the energy sector.
Coinciding with Europe Day, this engaging event tackled two main concerns that have occupied the minds of many governments and companies alike: energy security and achieving the goals of sustainability. It was an occasion that echoed the call for deeper cooperation between Europe, Egypt, and the East Mediterranean for the mutual benefit of all.
As the cradle of civilization and a country that once used to be the ancient’s world source of grain, Egypt shall become the modern world’s supplier of natural gas, especially to Europe. With European energy markets looking for stability of supply, Egypt’s richness in natural gas as well as its modernized infrastructure is just the solution that Europe needs to quench its thirst for this vital resource. Having an advantageous geographical position in East Mediterranean, Egypt has everything it needs to be a treasure trove of natural gas located at Europe’s doorstep. “Egypt has proven to hold the keys to being a regional energy hub with a strategic location, well-established energy industry, and reliable infrastructure, helping monetize all potentials present in the East Mediterranean region,” El Molla said.
Monetization is a key point that was touched on by Osama Mobarez, the Secretary General of the East Mediterranean Gas Forum. During a panel discussion moderated by Egypt Oil & Gas Founder and CEO Mohamed Fouad, Mobarez stated that “The main objective of the establishment of the EMGF was that we saw there are a lot of resources in the East Mediterranean, a lot of discoveries, that have not been monetized due to several challenges. We have seen that we can overcome those challenges mainly through collaboration, bringing the different governments together and bringing the different stakeholders together.” Mobarez further emphasized that the EMGF’s role in bringing the region closer together is to unleash and monetize all of the potentials that it has to offer.
In the same panel discussion, EU Ambassador Christian Berger outlined the importance of collaboration to push Europe’s Green Deal forward. “We have always said we need our immediate neighbors, we need actually the entire world, I would say, to achieve the goals of the Green Deal.” He added, “We in Egypt find great partners because there is a very strong interest in Egypt itself to become a hub for renewable energy, which is a very important component of the Green Deal.”
Apart from its advantage in both resources and geographic position, Egypt has demonstrated time and again its commitment to meeting its goals. For this reason, many experts agree that Egypt will prove to be a regional leader within the East Mediterranean for the years to come. Taking an active part in the engaging discussion, IEOC General Manager Mattia Campanati further expressed his confidence in Egypt as a major force within the East Med market. “We are pretty sure that Egypt will maintain and proceed as a leader in the East Mediterranean area.”
During the event, there was also another panel discussion involving European Investment Bank (EIB) Vice President Gelsomina Vigliotti, Hitachi Energy’s Vice President Thomas Krysen, Siemens Energy Egypt’s Managing Director Layla El Hares, SCATEC’s Global Head of Green Hydrogen and Ammonia and General Manager Mohamed Amer, and Copelouzos Group’s Chief Operating Officer of the Renewable and Battery Storage Business Unit John Karydas. Policies, priorities, and financial mechanisms that will boost the energy transition and connect Europe and Egypt were the main focuses of this discussion.