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Egyptian Gas Supply to Lebanon Awaits US Guarantees, World Bank Funding

Egyptian Gas Supply to Lebanon Awaits US Guarantees, World Bank Funding

Friday, 15 April, 2022 - 08:30
The Egyptian Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources and his Lebanese counterpart in Cairo in October 2021. (Asharq Al-Awsat)

Lebanon’s Energy Minister Walid Fayyad held talks with Egypt’s Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources Tarek al-Mulla in Cairo on Thursday.

Fayyad said that concluding the deal to import gas from Egypt through Syria requires US guarantees to exempt Lebanon from the Caesar Act sanctions, and requires the necessary World Bank financing.

Importing gas from Egypt “is currently in the hands of the World Bank to secure the necessary funding,” as well as in the hands of the United States of America “so that the repercussions of the Caesar Act do not have a negative impact on the project of transporting gas to Lebanon through Syria," Fayyad said.

Both sides reviewed the terms of the contract for the agreement to supply Egyptian gas to Lebanon.

They agreed on most of these terms, and the necessary procedures are currently being completed to start exporting gas to Lebanon, Egypt’s Ministry of Petroleum said in a statement.

Talks also tackled the coordination with Jordan and Syria, through which the gas will be piped to reach Lebanon.

Mulla affirmed Egypt’s commitment and support to Lebanon in line with the strong brotherly ties, referring to President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi’s pledge to support the Lebanese people.

“The gas supply agreement represents an Egyptian contribution to addressing the energy problem in Lebanon,” Mulla said, underlining the importance of completing the remaining procedures to start the supply process.

Fayyad, for his part, expressed Lebanon’s appreciation to Sisi and Egypt for supporting the Lebanese people and understanding Lebanon's requirements in light of the current critical economic situation.

Lebanon suffers a severe crisis in electricity supplies, which it seeks to resolve through a US-backed plan to use Egyptian gas by pumping it through Jordan and Syria to operate a power station in northern Lebanon. But the agreement has not been signed yet.

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