Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Egypt to revise gas deals with Israel



Egypt's Prime Minister Essam Sharaf

Source: Press TV
http://www.presstv.ir/detail/174664.html

Egypt's Prime Minister Essam Sharraf has asked for the revision of all contracts related to natural gas exports abroad, particularly to Israel.

Sharraf said on Wednesday that Cairo's planned revision could bring Egypt an extra three to four billion dollars in revenues.

Israel is expected to be hit hard by the measure since Egypt supplies an estimated 40 percent of its gas.

The deal with Tel Aviv was a highly controversial issue during the rule of ousted president Hosni Mubarak.

Four Israeli firms have signed agreements to import gas under a 20-year contract.

The agreement has been repeatedly challenged in Egyptian courts as it was without parliament's consultation.

Sharraf will also meet with the Jordanian energy minister to discuss the gas deal with his country.

Opposition groups have long complained that Mubarak was selling natural gas to Israel at preferential prices.

The developments come as Egypt's public prosecutor has summoned the former president and his son for questioning over corruption and the use of violence against peaceful protesters.

Earlier reports said Mubarak and his former petroleum minister were also being investigated for selling artificially cheap gas to the Israeli regime.

The chief prosecutor had received evidence that Mubarak and Sameh Fahmy had sold natural gas to Israel and several Western countries for under market prices.

Fahmy has recently told investigators that he was just carrying out orders from Mubarak.

However, Mubarak has rejected the corruption accusations as libel.

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