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Sunday, 10 January 2021

It’s a gas, gas, gas

TAQA Arabia will invest EGP 3.6 bn to build 180 natgas filling stations between now and 2023, Executive Chairman Khaled Abu Bakr told Kelma Akhira’s Lamees El Hadidi last night (watch, runtime: 9:22). Qalaa Holdings’ energy distributor was announced last week as a private sector partner that will help expand the country’s network of natgas stations as more gas-fuelled cars and buses take to the roads over the coming years. The company will spend EGP 800 mn to construct 40 stations this year, EGP 1.2 bn on 60 stations in 2022 and EGP 1.6 bn on 80 stations in 2023, Abu Bakr said.

This means that TAQA has taken more than half of the 300 stations the government plans to establish over the next three years.

We’re also getting more Chillout-branded natgas fueling stations: The Natural Gas Vehicles Company (Cargas) and Gastec signed an agreement on Wednesday to hand over 24 plots of land to Chillout (a subsidiary of state-owned Wataniya for Roads) to set up the stations, according to an Oil Ministry statement.

The National Bank of Egypt is planning to finance EGP 5-7 bn-worth of car replacements, the bank’s retail risk head, Karim Sous, said, according to Al Shorouk. The central bank last week said it will make EGP 15 bn available for banks to loan out to car owners wanting to own dual-fuel vehicles. Borrowers will pay a fixed 3% rate of interest and the loan terms will range between seven and 10 years.

ALSO ON THE ENERGY FRONT- Fuel prices are staying unchanged for another three months, the government’s fuel pricing committee decided at its first meeting of the year on Wednesday, according to a statement. The decision will keep 95-octane at EGP 8.50 per liter, 92-octane at EGP 7.50, and 80-octane at EGP 6.25. Meanwhile, diesel prices will stay at EGP 6.75 per liter and mazut (heavy fuel oil) for factories is unchanged at EGP 3.9k per tonne.

Fuel prices have now been held steady since last April, when the committee cut fuel prices by EGP 0.25 across the board. The decision to keep prices unchanged for another three months is meant to create price stability amid “current circumstances” with the ongoing pandemic, the statement says.

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