Egypt Mulls LNG Import Options

A gas crunch is forcing Egypt into LNG purchases. But it faces competition.

Egypt is in negotiations with several suppliers over the purchase of gas, at a time when the dynamics of the market are in flux.

An LNG exporter until just a few months ago, the most populous country in the Arab world is looking to Algeria, Russia and French firm Gaz de France for a supply deal, according to Tarek El Molla, the head of government-owned Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC).

Heavy subsidies on energy products and generous allocations of gas to industry, combined with the failure to increase production in line with soaring consumption, have created a supply shortfall. The petroleum ministry forecasts that production of natural gas will average 5.4bn cfd in the fiscal year that begins on 1 July, less than a predicted consumption of 5.57bn cfd. (CONTINUED - 1126 WORDS)