Eni has signed an agreement with the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC) and Lukoil to merge the Meleiha and Meleiha Deep concessions into a new concession called Merged Meliha in the Western Desert, according to a statement.

The merged Meleiha concessions will be extended to 2036, with the possibility of reaching further to 2041. Per the statement, the agreement will unlock considerable resources and allow to further exploit the region’s gas reserves, strengthening Eni’s role as the largest gas producer in Egypt.

In order to further expand its role in Egypt, Eni will construct a new gas treatment plant that will be connected to the Western Desert Gas Complex in Alexandria and will allow it to further exploit the region’s gas reserves. The company will also capitalize on the skills of local contractors who are already involved in the implementation of significant projects in Egypt such as the Zohr gas field.

The concession will be operated by Agiba, the joint venture (JV) between EGPC (50%) and Eni (50%), through its subsidiary IEOC that holds a 76% interest in the concession, while Lukoil holds a 24% interest.