The Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, Tarek El Molla, has highlighted the significant achievements of the petroleum sector during the period from March up till now despite coronavirus and its consequences, according to a press release.

El Molla’s remarks came during his speech in the Akhbar Al Yom economic conference under the title “Egyptian Economy: Achievements and Challenges In Shadow of Coronavirus” which was attended by a number of ministries and chairmen of holding companies and entities in addition to senior officials.

El Molla referred to the flexible strategy of petroleum operations in Egypt which enabled it to achieve positive indicators while keeping the necessary balance between plans implementation and keeping employees safe.

El Molla said that the pandemic was a test for the petroleum reforms’ efficiency and its impact on securing energy resources as well as supporting investment opportunities and boosting economic growth.

The minister said that 14 exploration and production (E&P) agreements have been signed since March with major international oil companies (IoCs) including Chevron and ExxonMobil which work for the first time in Egypt. He also referred to the inauguration of the Egyptian refinery of the Mostorod project and high-octane gasoline production project in Alexandria in attendance of President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi with investments of $4.5 billion.

El Molla elaborated that three refinery projects are under construction in Assiut and Alexandria worth $ 7.5 billion aiming to achieve the self-sufficiency of gasoline and diesel production by 2030. He added that a number of petrochemical projects are launched and operated in addition to updating petrochemical strategy to cope up with the state’s demand upgrade until 2040 referring to the launch of Al Hamara offshore pipeline in New Alamein.

The Minister also highlighted the signing of East Mediterranean Gas Forum (EMGF) charter to become an official organization to benefit from natural gas as a peace incentive instead of conflict in the region.

El Molla pointed to the successes of the past six years including converting natural gas growth from -11% to 25% in fiscal year (FY) 2019/2020 and achieving self-sufficiency of natural gas. He added that the petroleum sector achieved the highest level of production at 1.9 million barrels of oil equivalent per day (mmboe/d).

Additionally, he highlighted that the number of natural gas connections reached 1.2 million housing units contributing  27% of Gross Domestic Product (GDB) with the highest rate of investments worth EGP 1.2 trillion during last six years in addition to the signature of 86 E&P agreements during the same period.