The Sixth Ministerial Meeting of the East Mediterranean Gas Forum (EMGF) convened in Cairo - The Arab Republic of Egypt - under the Presidency of His Excellency Tarek El Molla, Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources of the Arab Republic of Egypt, as the current President of the EMGF Ministerial Meeting.
The Meeting was attended by the Cypriot, Egyptian, Greek, Israeli, Jordanian and Palestinian Ministers of Energy, as well as the French Director General for Global Affairs, Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs and the Italian Directorate General for Infrastructure and safety of Energy and Geomineral Systems as the heads of delegations of the EMGF Member Countries. The United States of America, the European Union and the World Bank attended as EMGF Observers.
During the Meeting, the Ministers reviewed the outcomes of Phase of the EMGF Long Term Strategy, which addresses the fundamental long-term objectives of the EMGF statute in line with the challenge of the global energy transition, while emphasizing the importance of natural gas as the least carbon-intensive hydrocarbon fuel during this energy transition.
In this respect, building on the successful G20 summit hosted in Rome under the Italian Presidency, the Ministers welcomed the developments and outcomes of the COP26 summit, and discussed the pivotal role of natural gas in facilitating the energy transition as the least carbon-intensive hydrocarbon fuel. Moreover, the Ministers reaffirmed that natural gas will continue to be an essential resource within the global energy mix to provide reliable, affordable and less carbon-intensive energy, both regionally and globally, to help economies transition towards net-zero emissions.
As an Intergovernmental Organization established to provide a cooperation platform for sustainable, efficient and environmentally conscious development, use and conservation of natural gas for a sustainable future, fully respecting the rights of its Members over their natural resources in accordance with international law, the Ministers reiterated their commitment to continue engaging different stakeholders, including governments, business partners and the private sector, to mobilize finance, avail required technologies, and build capacities to make natural gas even less carbon-intensive, including through de-carbonization and reducing methane emissions. Furthermore, the Ministers agreed to work together towards co-developing joint initiatives for climate action also in view of COP27 summit, which will be hosted by Egypt next year.
Additionally, the Ministers reviewed the study of the "Regional Natural Gas and Energy Supply and Demand Balance" supported by the European Union.
Among other outcomes, the Ministers discussed and endorsed the EMGF budget for the year 2022.
The Meeting also witnessed an important milestone as the Ministers agreed by consensus on the appointment of His Excellency Osama Mobarez as the Secretary General of the EMGF for 3 years starting from January 2022.
The Ministers appointed Her Excellency Natasa Pilides - Minister of Energy, Commerce and Industry of the Republic of Cyprus - as President of the Ministerial Meeting and His Excellency Tarek El Molla, Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources of the Arab Republic of Egypt, as the Alternate President for the year 2022. Moreover, Mr. Marios Panayides, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Energy, Commerce and Industry of the Republic of Cyprus, was appointed as Executive Board Chairman for the same year.
The Ministers adopted the EMGF activities and roadmap for the year 2022, and agreed to convene for the next Ministerial Meeting in the EMGF Headquarters in Cairo during June 2022.
At the end, the Ministers expressed recognition to His Excellency Tarek El Molla - Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources of the Arab Republic of Egypt - for hosting the EMGF and for His Excellency's constant valuable efforts exerted through Presidency of the Ministerial Meeting during the past 3 years.
As a final point, the Ministers expressed their deep appreciation to the Arab Republic of Egypt under the leadership of His Excellency President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi for providing the utmost support to the EMGF since its inception, resulting in significant achievements towards developing a sustainable regional gas market and enhancing regional cooperation on the basis of international law.