Israel: Pyrrhic Egypt Gas Arbitration Victory Sets Back Leviathan Hopes

Israeli politicians were less than delighted with state power firm IEC’s $1.8bn arbitration victory against Egypt. The ruling undermines the chances of Israeli gas going to Egypt, the main development option for the stalled Leviathan field.

Israeli Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu was this week scrabbling to mend fences with Cairo, after the Egyptians took badly to a 5 December ruling by the Geneva-based International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), awarding the Israeli state electricity corporation (IEC) $1.76bn in damages for Egypt’s unilateral halting of gas supplies to Israel through the East Mediterranean Gas (EMG) pipeline in 2012.

Although seemingly a victory for Israel, the decision could have a detrimental effect on any export plans the country has after Cairo said it was freezing any negotiations that would see the import of Israeli gas. This prompted Mr Netanyahu to dispatch a special envoy to Egypt – set to arrive next week – in an attempt to come to a solution. (CONTINUED - 979 WORDS)