East Mediterranean Gas Forum

The East Mediterranean Gas Forum (EMGF or EGF), also known as the EastMed Gas Forum or simply EastMed,[1] is an international organization formed by Cyprus, Egypt, France, Greece, Israel, Italy, Jordan, and Palestine. Informally established in 2019,[2] the organization's formal charter was signed in September 2020,[3] which an additional framework agreement signed in January 16,[4] and the charter legally entering into force by March 9, 2021.[2][5] Its headquarters are located in Cairo, Egypt.[4]

East Mediterranean Gas Forum
Abbreviation
  • EMGF
Formation22 September 2020; 2 years ago (2020-09-22) (formal chapter signing)
9 March 2021 (2021-03-09) (charter entering into force)
TypeInternational organization
HeadquartersCairo, Egypt
Membership
Full members

HistoryEdit

Originally, the bloc was an informal forum of Egypt, Cyprus, Israel, and Greece. Major companies, such as Total S.A., Eni and Novatek and Exxon, have signed exploration and production agreements concerning gas with those governments.[6][7]

On September 22, 2020, the member countries signed a formal charter to create a new intergovernmental organization.[3] Subsequently, France asked to join the Forum as a member while the European Union and UAE wish to join as permanent observers.[8][9] On 9 March 2021, France's membership to the EMGF was approved,[10] while the United Arab Emirate's membership was vetoed by Palestine in the EMGF's Ministerial conference which was held at Cairo, Egypt.[11] The organization also announced on 9 March that its charter had officially entered into effect.[2]

On 15 June 2022 it was announced at the EGMF that the EU, Egypt and Israel had reached an accord that would see the supply of gas to the EU, in order that the latter could reduce its dependence on Russia, which in 2021 supplied the EU with roughly 40 percent of its gas. According to the deal, gas from Israel will be brought via a pipeline to the LNG terminal on the Egypt's Mediterranean coast before being transported on tankers to the European shores.[12] Reports were afoot that Russia cut its exports to Europe on the same day "as a sign of displeasure at the deal signed in Cairo."[13] As a deal sweetener Ursula von der Leyen pledged food relief worth $104 million for Egypt, which has been reeling from grain shortages as a result of the Ukraine war, as well as 3 billion euros in "agriculture, nutrition, water and sanitation programmes over the next years here in the region".[14] The EU's new policy is to be fully independent of Russian fossil fuels before 2030.[15] The subject of the agreement, white gas, is found in underground deposits and created through fracking.[15]

Members & observersEdit

Current members:

Permanent Observer:

Status Unclear:

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Matalucci, Sergio (8 October 2020). "EastMed Gas Forum fuels energy diplomacy in troubled region". Deutsche Welle. Retrieved 11 March 2021.
  2. ^ a b c "East Mediterranean Gas Forum's statute comes into effect as ministers meet in Cairo". Ahram Online. 9 March 2021. Retrieved 11 March 2021.
  3. ^ a b "East Mediterranean states formally establish Egypt-based gas forum". Reuters. 22 September 2020. Retrieved 11 March 2021.
  4. ^ a b Anselmo, Fabrizio (27 January 2020). "Verso un'OPEC del gas mediterraneo?" (in Italian). Istituto per gli Studi di Politica Internazionale. Retrieved 2 November 2020.
  5. ^ "Charter of E. Mediterranean Gas Forum enters into force". XinhuaNet. 10 March 2021. Retrieved 11 March 2021.
  6. ^ "Congress Quietly Adopts Exxon Mobil-Backed Law Promoting New Gas Pipeline, Arms to Cyprus". The Intercept. Retrieved 20 February 2020.
  7. ^ "EastMed gas: Paving the way for a new geopolitical era?". Deutsche Welle. Retrieved 2 July 2019.
  8. ^ "France asks to join Eastern Mediterranean Gas Forum". Reuters. 16 January 2020.
  9. ^ "UAE joins East Mediterranean Gas Forum | Kathimerini". www.ekathimerini.com. Retrieved 17 December 2020.
  10. ^ "Η Γαλλία νέο μέλος του East Med Gas Forum)" [France becomes member of the East Med Gas Forum] (in Greek). Capital.gr. 9 March 2021. Retrieved 10 March 2021.
  11. ^ "Palestine vetoes UAE membership in EastMed Gas Forum". anews. Retrieved 10 March 2021.
  12. ^ "In landmark deal signed in Cairo, Israel to export natural gas, via Egypt, to Europe". THE TIMES OF ISRAEL. 15 June 2022.
  13. ^ Yeranian, Edward (15 June 2022). "EU, Egypt, Israel Agree to Export Israeli Liquified Natural Gas to Europe". VOA News.
  14. ^ "EU signs gas deal with Egypt, Israel to end 'dependency' on Russia". France24. 15 June 2022.
  15. ^ a b "EU signs gas deal with Egypt and Israel to curb dependence on Russia". Deutsche Welle. 15 June 2022.
  16. ^ "Palestinian Authority vetoes UAE bid to join Eastern Mediterranean Gas Forum: reports". The New Arab. 10 March 2021. Retrieved 11 March 2021.
  17. ^ "Egypt says UAE joins East Mediterranean gas forum as an observer". Reuters. 16 December 2020. Retrieved 11 March 2021.

See alsoEdit