Apache has completed the necessary studies to research and explore shale gas in the Obayyed field in the Western Desert for the first time in Egypt, reported Egypt Daily News.

The company is also working on an evaluation of the layers and calculations of the gas reserves.

An official in the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC) noted that Apache completed the studies and sent them to its head office in the US for revision, to put forth a work plan for drilling the first exploratory well. The official added that the Dutch Shell and Apache are working together on the project in the upper layers of the land, called the Safa layers. These layers have a high-quality thickness, but require irregular operation methods; however, Apache will be responsible for implementing the work due to its expertise.

On a similar note, Shell requested form the EGPC to agree on the price of the shale gas that will be produced from the area for the first time in Egypt, as the cost of the project will be high and the process of extraction is significantly different than regular sources. Currently Egypt pays $2.65/BTU in most of its agreements, with the exception of some deepwater Mediterranean fields.