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Inauguration of the first phase of the Arab Gas Pipeline

Source: 7/28/2003, Location: Africa

President Housny Mobarak and king Abdallah the second of Jordan, have inaugurated on the 27th of July 2003 in both Taba and Aqaba the first phase of the Arab gas pipeline (Arish - Taba - Aqaba). Both leaders had given the start up signal of Gas exportation for the first time from Egypt to Jordan.

The Egyptian petroleum minister Eng. Sameh Fahmy has explained the importance of the Arab Gas pipeline which was accomplished in corporation with Jordan, Syria and Lebanon. He also explained the factors that had helped in the success of the project’s first phase.

The Egyptian gains from this project are expected to be 70 million US dollars in the first year and will increase to reach 200 million dollars after 2 years and 500 million dollars in 5 years.

The Jordanian Energy and petroleum minister Eng. Mohamed Batina declared that the Arab Gas Pipeline was accomplished in 18 month and will be a clean source of energy and a substitute of oil for the Jordanian industry.

The first phase
The first phase of the Arab gas pipeline (Arish - Taba - Aqaba) consists of two segments: land and marine. The land segment starts from Arish to Taba in south Sinai and ends in the Gulf of Aqaba with a total length of 248 km, 36" diameter and a capacity of 10 BCMY. The land segment was completed in January 2003. The marine segment runs under the Gulf of Aqaba in water depth of 850-m with total length of 16 km and 26" diameter. Operations in this segment began on 17/3/2003. The executive contractor is "All Seas" of the Netherlands. The total investment of the first phase is $200 million. The contractual gas volume to be exported from Egypt to Jordan is 1 billion cubic meter/year and will increase gradually to reach 2.3 billion cubic meter/year.

The first phase will provide Aqaba thermal power station with 12 billion cubic meter of natural gas also it will feed Aqaba industrial zone with natural gas where three textile companies and a phosphate complex will be operated with natural gas. This is in addition to 25 thousand houses and 315 commercials and touristic resorts that will be provided with natural gas through this phase.

The second phase
The second phase start from Aqaba port to El Rehab in Jordan just 24 km from the Syrian border with a length of 390 km. This phase had been awarded in August 2002 to the Egyptian consortium (EGAS, Petrojet, Enppi, and GASCO) on a Build, Own, Operate and Transfer (BOOT) base. The Egyptian Companies will manage, operate, develop and maintain the pipeline for a period of 30 years with optional extension period of 10 years after this period the ownership of the project will be transferred to Jordan. The total investments of the second phase are $250 million and it is the first project for the Egyptian petroleum sector companies outside Egypt. A new Egyptian Jordanian company called FAGR was established to execute this phase. The new company shareholders are Egypt with 40% shares, the United Arab Emirates with 40% shares and Jordan with 20% shares. This phase is scheduled to be completed in May 2005.

The third phase
The third phase will be extended to the north from the Jordanian Syrian borders to the Syrian Turkish borders and to the west to Panias and Tarablous in Lebanon with further extension possibilities to Turkey as well as east and mid Europe.

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