For the fourth consecutive year, the Egypt Petroleum Show (EGYPS 2020) has once again continued to establish itself as a perfect venue for enhancing cooperation among the oil and gas sector’s companies. The three-day event witnessed a myriad of agreements signed by the Egyptian Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, international oil companies (IOCs) as well as national oil companies (NOCs). The aspects of these agreements included, but were not limited to, developing the sector’s human resources, boosting production, and utilizing cutting-edge technologies.

Wintershall Dea

On the eve of the EGYPS 2020, Wintershall Dea and the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources signed a concession agreement for the East Damanhour block. The block is located to the west of Wintershall Dea’s Disouq development in the onshore Nile Delta. During the first exploration phase of three years, starting in 2020, Wintershall Dea is planning to drill several exploration wells.

Wintershall Dea will now begin a three-year exploration phase in the East Damanhour block. Sameh Sabry, Wintershall Dea’s Managing Director for Egypt, said: “Over the years we have developed extensive knowledge and experience in this area. This, and the block’s proximity to our existing Disouq infrastructure, means that we are well placed for a quick development of any discovered volumes.”

Methanex

The CEO of the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC) and Methanex Egypt Managing Director, Mohamed Shindy, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to enable collaboration between both parties to embed the culture of Process Safety Management (PSM) within the Egyptian oil and gas sector.

The MoU stipulates the creation of an Egyptian PSM Steering Committee that will drive a robust agenda and a roadmap aimed at institutionalizing PSM within the industry, in line with the ministry’s Modernization Project and international best practices, guidelines, and standards.

The steering committee will be composed of leaders from the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, EGPC, Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company (EGAS), Egyptian Petrochemicals Holding Company (ECHEM) and Ganoub El Wadi Petroleum Holding Company (Ganope) in addition to Methanex. The signing was attended by ECHEM Chairman Saad Helal, EGAS Chairman Osama el-Bakly, and members of Egypt’s PSM Steering Committee.

ECHEM, Bechtel

ECHEM signed an agreement with Bechtel to establish a $6.7 billion petrochemical plant and refinery in the Suez Canal Economic Zone. The agreement aims to fast-track the mega metro-refinery complex project to achieve 20% growth in local production of value-added petrochemical products. Under the agreement, ECHEM will begin conducting feasibility studies with an international consultancy.

The agreement was signed by the President of ECHEM and the CEO of the Bechtel, in the presence of Tarek Amer, Governor of the Central Bank, and Jonathan Cohen, the American Ambassador to Cairo.

The following day ECHEM signed an agreement with a consortium of BSW Group and Shard Capital to develop a refinery and petrochemical complex in New Alamein worth some $8.5 billion. The facility will produce 1.5 million tons of petrochemical products and another 1 million tons of petroleum products, including kerosene and mazut, per year.

Meanwhile, Bechtel met with Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources Tarek El Molla, where the US-based company signed two cooperation agreements with Petrojet and Enppi.

Petrojet

Petrojet signed several agreements with different IOCs as well as NOCs. First, an MoU was signed by the Chairman and Managing Director of Petrojet Waleed Lotfy, and the Guinean Minister of Mines and Hydrocarbons Gabriel Mbega Obiang. Afterwards, Petrojet signed a related agreement with the Arab Contractors Company to cooperate in projects in Equatorial Guinea.

Petrojet has also led a consortium of Assiut National Oil Processing Company (ANOPC), Technip, ENPPI to sign an Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) contract for establishing a Mazut Hydro-cracking Complex in Assiut. The $2.5 billion project will contribute to utilizing the country’s resources through the latest mazut hydro-cracking technology, which helps transform lower-value petroleum products into higher-value ones, especially diesel with a production capacity of around 2.8 million tons.

Two other deals were signed between Petrojet and Italy’s Saipem company for implementing projects in Libya and offering advanced training programs for Egyptian cadres.

Meanwhile, a deal was signed between Petrojet and the newly-established state Wood Technology company (WOTECH) to set up a $228 million facility north of Cairo that will convert rice straw into wood. The plant, in the Nile Delta’s Beheira, will produce 205,000 square meters a year of medium-density fiberboards (MDF), using technologies by Germany’s plant engineering firm Siempelkamp, which will help carry out the project. Another contract was signed on the same project with Siempelkamp at investments that are worth about $230 million.

In addition, Petrojet along with the Egyptian Natural Gas Company (GASCO), and Enppi signed an MoU to expand GASCO’s Western Desert gas complex and boost the facility’s capacity to 1.5 billion cubic feet per day (bcf/d) from 600 million cubic feet per day (mcf/d).

Schlumberger

Three MoUs were signed with Schlumberger during EGYPS 2020. The first agreement was signed between EGPC and Schlumberger to build, operate and transfer Egypt’s Upstream Gateway. The agreement will focus on digitally promoting Egypt’s oil and gas bid rounds through seamless online access to the sector’s data. The Egypt Upstream Gateway is a unique and innovative national project for digitizing subsurface information and delivering a digital subsurface platform to ensure Egypt’s subsurface data is kept evergreen. It will also be a platform to promote Egypt’s exploration and production potential worldwide.

The MoU was signed by Eng. Abed Ezzal Regal, CEO of EGPC, and Karim Badawi, Managing Director of Schlumberger Egypt and the Eastern Mediterranean, in the presence of Tarek Amer, the Governor of the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE), and Olivier Le Peuch, CEO of Schlumberger International.

The second MoU was signed with the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources for sustainability. This MoU aims to spread awareness and enhance collaboration on sustainability initiatives. Signing this MoU comes in line with Schlumberger’s approach to sustainability which mainly depends on its long-standing culture of social and environment stewardship, in addition to supporting the sector’s young professionals. Moreover, it benefits the entire oil and gas sector and its joint venture bodies.

A third MoU was signed between Schlumberger and BP, aiming to boost cooperation in digitization of the East Mediterranean gas upstream market. It was signed by Hinda Gharbi, Reservoir and Infrastructure, Executive Vice President, and Hesham Mekkawy, BP’s North Africa Regional President. Under the MoU, the two companies will work together on digitalizing the East Mediterranean gas upstream market.

BP

An agreement was signed between the ministry and BP for the cooperation in human resources development, which comes within the framework of the Middle Management Program. The agreement aims to ensure the continuous development of Egypt’s petroleum sector’s youth over the next three years to deliver future leaders to guarantee a successful future.

According to the agreement, BP is committed to implementing an advanced training program to transfer its specialized work experience and qualify trainees. The signing was attended by the Minister of Petroleum and Bernard Looney, CEO of BP. The agreement was signed by Osama Mobarez, Undersecretary of the Technical Office of the Ministry of Petroleum, and Hisham Makkawi, President of BP for North Africa.

BP also signed a cooperation agreement in the field of marine supply with EGPC to collaborate with local companies, as part of efforts to transform Egypt into a regional energy hub, given its strategic location as the center of major global maritime shipping lines, led by the Suez Canal.

ENAP

Another MoU was signed by EGPC and Empresa Nacional Del Petroleo (ENAP), organized and existed under the laws of the Republic of Chile. Through the MoU, EGPC will be able to meet the growing local demand of petroleum products, develop the exploration and production (E&P) activities, maximize oil production, and boost oil reserves.

Signing this MoU will enable both companies to contribute to flourishing the oil and gas sector in their countries. This could be achieved through exchanging scientific knowledge and technical assistance. In addition to that, this collaboration will help bolster the diplomatic relations between the two countries.

This technical collaboration aims at developing hydrocarbons in the basins in which ENAP operates, exchange of information and operational experience on unconventional reservoirs based on ENAP´s activities in tight gas plays and providing EGPC insights on ENAP´s corporate health, safety, and environment (HSE) high standards application.

Neptune Energy

Neptune Energy signed an exploration license with EGPC for Egypt’s North West El Amal Offshore Concession, underlining the company’s commitment to growing its presence in North Africa. Neptune will acquire 100 kilometers square (km2) of 3D seismic data and drill one exploration well in the first phase, with two further wells planned in phase two. The signing ceremony was attended by El Molla, Abed Ezz El Regal; Neptune Energy’s CEO Jim House, VP North Africa and Asia Pacific Philip Lafeber, in addition to Neptune Egypt’s Managing Director Gamal Kassem.

Petroleum Air Services

Petroleum Air Services (PAS) signed the purchase contracts of two AW139 helicopters, thus expanding its fleet to support the deep-water oil and gas exploration activities in the Mediterranean region. The AW139 aircraft model is considered one of the best-suited models used specifically for deep-water exploration, transporting employees and equipment to offshore bases, used especially in Zohr and North Alexandria offshore fields. With the addition of these two helicopters, PAS fleet from this type will amount to eight helicopters, while the total fleet will amount to 44 aircrafts from different types in both fixed wing and helicopters.

CAFU

EGPC signed an MoU with CAFU, the MENA region’s first on-demand fuel delivery service, to provide regulatory support and enable its launch across Egypt. The agreement is a recognition of Egypt’s commitment to develop the digital economy, support sustainability and environmental goals while generating high-tech employment and skills development amongst the Egyptian population. Designed to deliver fuel “anytime anywhere” directly to customers’ vehicles, CAFU is a fast, safe and easy-to-use on-demand fuel delivery service available through a mobile app.

USTDA

Another agreement signed by the Egyptian Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources was with the United States Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) to enhance cooperation in developing the sector and its infrastructure. USTDA vowed to continue providing training programs and opportunities in human resources, consultations, energy efficiency and other areas.

Italy

A consortium of Egyptian companies including EGAS, the Egyptian International Gas Technology (gastec), and the Natural Gas Vehicles Company (CAR GAS) signed two deals with the Italian Landi Renzo company for locally assembling of the natural gas supply stations and the components needed for converting vehicles to run on natural gas in Egypt.

Cooperation with Somalia

El Molla signed an MoU with his Somali counterpart Abdel Rashid Mohamed Ahmed to enhance co-operation between Egypt and Somalia in the fields of oil, gas and mineral resources and transfer of Egyptian experiences in these areas to Somalia through establishing mutual co-operation between both countries.

Chevron

US oil Chevron signed two agreement with EGPC and Alexandria Mineral Oils Company (AMOC) to cooperate on a commercial and technical basis in the fields of refining crude oil and distributing petroleum products.

Shell

Egypt’s Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources also signed an agreement with Shell to cooperate in training young calibers and middle managers, in line with the Egyptian petroleum sector Modernization Project.

Other Highlights

The Egyptian Gas Services Company signed agreements with Clarkson Shipping Agency and the Sahara Petroleum Services Company (SAPEsco) for the provision of support services for natural gas tankers, navigation, and port transactions.

In the meantime, the Suez Methanol Derivatives Company signed an MoU with the Egyptian Maintenance Company to construct a methanol derivatives facility in Damietta.

Furthermore, EGAS, Egyptian Drilling Co., and Vantage International signed an MoU to begin a deep-sea drilling training program.

Post EGYPS

Egypt inked its first WestMed oil and gas exploration agreements as EGYPS wrapped up. The Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources signed MoUs with five IOCs: Royal Dutch Shell, Chevron, BP, Total, and ExxonMobil for deepwater oil and gas exploration and production off its western Mediterranean coast. The agreements cover seven concessions, and will see exploratory drilling beginning early next year.