The Egyptian Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, Tarek El Molla, announced the start of natural gas production from Egypt’s and the Mediterranean’s largest offshore field, Zohr, Egypt Oil & Gas reports.

The onshore processing facility will process and pump production from the field into the country’s natural gas national grid, with an initial production capacity of 350 million standard cubic feet per day (mscf/d), after the success of operational trials of processing facilities and pipelines.

Zohr’s production is considered a milestone in the history of the natural gas industry, both globally and in Egypt, especially after adding initial output from Zohr field to the production map in an unprecedented record time, compared to other natural gas discoveries all over the world, El Molla pointed out.

Upon completing the first phase of the project, which is planned in June 2018, the field’s output will gradually reach more than one billion cubic feet per day (bcf/d) of natural gas, EL Molla highlighted, adding that this production will contribute to achieving self-sufficiency of natural gas and decreasing imports bill.

The minister pointed out that Zohr’s output will reach 2.7 bcf/d, upon finalizing all phases of the project by the end of 2019.