By Mohammed Adel
Egypt received a petroleum grant of $2.6bn from the UAE and Saudi Arabia during the first four months in 2014 in the form of shipments of fuel oil, diesel and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), according to president of the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC) Tareq Al-Mula.
The Petroleum Authority received approximately $ 4.8bn in grants from the oil states of Kuwait, the UAE and Saudi Arabia during the second half of 2013.
The authority requested that the UAE and Saudi Arabia continue to supply quantities of fuel oil so as to provide for the needs of power stations throughout the summer. According to Mula, the petroleum grant will be provided in instalments until the end of next June.
Mula said that Egypt has imported shipments of petroleum products, including “fuel oil, diesel, LPG, and gasoline” worth approximately $ 9.6bn annually, in order to meet the needs of the domestic market.
Egypt has made various offers to the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait regarding a number of projects, including the establishment of laboratories for refinement areas in Ain Sokhna, the North Coast, Alexandria and Upper Egypt. Several petrochemical projects were also presented.
The Gulf countries have expressed their willingness to invest in the Egyptian petroleum sector enterprises, particularly in exploring and developing oil and gas fields.
Presidential candidate Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi said in an interview last week that the coming government will not cut energy subsidies. He added that providing gas and electricity without subsidies is impossible, and that he “must first fortify the people and get the economy and other projects moving before subsidies are reduced”.
Al-Sisi has announced that subsidies will not be reduced because he is certain he would have access to Gulf oil grants if elected. According to former Vice President of the Petroleum Authority Medhat Youssef, Egypt will not be able to rely on its own resources to provide for the full value of the subsidy.
The Saudi Arabians have recently launched several campaigns on social networking sites, emphasising their support for Egypt and Al-Sisi as the nation’s next president. This occurred after Al-Sisi praised the positive role of the King of Saudi Arabia in supporting the country through financial and petroleum grants.