Liberalizing Egypt’s gas market requires additional steps and greater cooperation, Amira El Mazni, Vice Chairman for Gas Regulatory Affairs at the Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company(EGAS) said at a working luncheon hosted by the British Egyptian Business Association (BEBA) on Monday, Egypt Oil & Gas reports.

At the luncheon,  El Mazni, discussed Egypt’s new natural gas law, its implementation, and its potential impact upon Egypt’s gas market.

In August, Egypt issued Law Number 196 to liberalize its domestic gas market, El Mazni noted. To accomplish the goal of the legislation, she stated that the government must take additional steps, such as issuing executive regulations to govern the implementation of the new law and establishing an independent regulatory body to oversee the emerging gas market.

Creating a gas market, she noted, will require significant cooperation between the Cabinet of Ministers, the new regulatory agency, and the private sector.

A liberalized market is important, according to El Mazni, because it “provides encouragement for new investments, diversification of supply sources, introduces competition, fair market play, affordability, and high quality.”

Under the new law, eligible consumers will be able to choose their own supplier and negotiate prices, she stated. With private companies entering the market, EGAS will no longer be solely responsible for meeting Egypt’s natural gas needs.

While not specifying the eligibility criteria that consumers must meet in order to choose their own gas supplier, El Mazni said it could be based on consumption volume or sector and will be subject to periodic review by the Cabinet of Ministers.

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