A United Arab Emirates gas company announced on Monday it had discovered natural gas in Egypt’s Nile Delta, estimating the deposit at between 4 billion and 6 billion cubic feet.
The Sharjah-based company, which is also the Middle East’s first and largest regional private sector natural gas company, said it has discovered a new gas field in the Nile Delta, Egypt. The discovery was at West Sama-1 in the West El Qantara Concession..
Dana Gas said the find was its second natural gas discovery in Egypt this year, after successful drilling in the Komombo Concession in the second quarter.
The company already has substantial operations in Egypt, and said last week that an Egyptian affiliate had started commercial output at a natural gas liquids plant there.
Dana Gas is currently the 6th highest gas producer in Egypt, a country whose gas reserves has doubled in the past 5 years to over 70 trillion cubic feet, and is among the world’s top ten exporters of LNG. In 2007 Dana Gas made Southern (Upper) Egypt’s historic first ever commercial oil discovery from its first exploration well drilled in the Komombo Concession.
Dana Gas is an operator in the Nile Delta currently producing gas and associated liquids from 11 fields, and is the 50% operator alongside Sea Dragon Energy and producing oil from one field in Upper Egypt. During 2011, Dana Gas Egypt produced 77.67 billion cubic feet of gas and 2.6 million barrels of liquids.
Egypt has become a net importer of oil over the past decade. Despite not being a net exporter, the government subsidises the oil and gas prices, with state’s energy bill hitting almost $16 billion a year, representing about a fifth of the government’s entire budget. The cost of imported petroleum products was $5 billion in the fiscal year ended in June.