Egypt in the News on 26 November 2017
The brutal weekend terror attack that killed at least 305 people at Friday prayers in Sinai continues to dominate headlines on Egypt in the international press. We have coverage on this angle in Speed Round, above.
Egypt is in talks with Italy, Greece, and Cyprus over the possibility of creating “a new energy corridor to Europe, with options including processing newly found gas at Egypt-based plants for export to the continent,” Eni CEO Claudio Descalzi said, according to The Associated Press. Eni is set to begin drilling two new exploratory wells off Cyprus’ coast over the two coming months, which could lead to the discovery of “significant reserves” that could be exported to Europe, which is looking to diversify its sources of energy. Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah El Sisi had met with his Cypriot and Greek counterparts for a summit last week to discuss possible cooperation on energy projects, particularly in natural gas, which the east Mediterranean is rich with. Egypt and Cyprus are expected to resume talks over the joint gas pipeline sometime in December.
…on a related note, Petroleum Economist notes that Egypt may find itself still needing to import natural gas in the future, despite Oil Minister Tarek El Molla announcing that the country should be self-sufficient by then. “At present, it’s hard to imagine a day when Egypt would again be looking abroad for supplies … But a possible cloud over the gas boom comes in the form of gas field depletion.” Egypt’s gas fields deplete at c. 20% a year, the article says, meaning that “huge investments will be required to maintain production at around 70 bn cm/y,” especially as local demand continues to climb.
Egypt’s solar power industry is growing more attractive as costs fall and competition intensifies, a BMI research report found. “Solar bids in competitive auctions have plummeted over the last year, as declining equipment costs and greater competition allow suppliers to bear and governments to extract cheaper asking prices, respectively.” The feed-in tariff program offers investors prices that position Egypt as a more attractive destination than other key markets including Mexico, Chile, India, Morocco, and the UAE. The National also picked up the report.
From the department of bizarre news: An Indian man was tricked into flying to Cairo under the false premise that he would be an Uber driver only to have his kidney stolen and sold to another person from India, Times of India reports.
Also worth noting in brief this morning:
- Gazans hope that Egypt will not give up on helping mend the rift between rival Palestinian factions, says Haaretz.
- The 40th anniversary of Egyptian-Israeli peace is still making headlines in Israel, with the latest piece, Egypt and Israel: Love Your Neighbor, coming from the JPost.
- Haisam Hassanein recounts his experiences as an Egyptian in Israel in this piece for The Wall Street Journal (paywall]).
- Singer Sherine Abdel Wahab is still on the foreign press’ radar, with The Economist noting that most countries would laugh the case against her for “insulting Egypt” straight out of court.
- Miss Egypt Farah Sedky could win Miss Universe today, according to People Bodies.
- Football star Mohamed Salah has thrown his stardom behind a campaign promoting women’s rights, The Times of Israel writes.
- The 95-year-old Australian wife of a diplomat stands accused of looting artefacts from Egypt during her husband’s posts here, reports the AP.