Egypt-Israel gas pipeline deal likely to be closed soon – sources

A deal that would transfer control of a natural gas pipeline between Israel and Egypt is expected to be closed in the next few days, the companies said on Sunday.

Texas-based Noble Energy, Israel’s Delek Drilling and Egyptian East Gas Co have partnered in a venture called EMED, which last year agreed to buy a 39 percent stake in the subsea EMG pipeline for $518 million that will carry Israeli gas exports to Egypt.

In a regulatory filing in Tel Aviv, Delek said the shares have already been transferred to the buyers while the funds are currently being held in a trust and that the transaction should be completed in the coming days.

Partners in Israel’s Leviathan and Tamar offshore gas fields had agreed to sell $15 billion worth of gas to a customer in Egypt, Dolphinus Holdings, but last month the deal was amended to boost supply by 34 percent to about 85 billion cubic meters, or an estimated $20 billion.

Noble and Delek are key partners in both Leviathan, which will start production in the coming weeks, and Tamar.

To buy into EMG, which owns the 90 km subsea pipeline between Ashkelon in Israel and El-Arish in Egypt, the three partners formed a joint company called EMED.

Source: Reuters