FILE - Minister of Petroleum Tarek El-Molla speaks during the Al-Ahram Energy Conference on December 18, 2017
CAIRO – 16 January 2020: "The East Mediterranean Gas Forum member countries shoulder a responsibility to overcome the dire challenges and tremendous changes in the region, which have caused geopolitical and economic difficulties," Minister of Petroleum Tarek el-Molla said.
This came during the inauguration of the third ministerial meeting of the forum.
Molla clarified Thursday that only through the concerted efforts of the participating countries continuous development of the region's natural resources can be achieved, which is a major goal of the forum.
He added that the forum contributes to easing political tension and promoting peace and stability through a successful model of economic and regional cooperation and integration among the forum's member states.
He pointed out that the member states have set a clear roadmap during the forum’s meetings to complement the forum’s founding framework to be adopted in the official establishment meeting held on Jan. 16.
The minister explained that the participating countries have already started the activities of the forum in parallel with the establishment procedures to develop and exploit gas resources in the region.
He added that the Gas Industry Advisory Committee (GIAC), which emerged from the forum, was established in November 2019 as a permanent platform that provides the private sector with an opportunity to put forward ideas and studies, enhancing cooperation to achieve the goals of the forum.
Molla affirmed the fruitful cooperation between the forum, the United States, the European Union and the World Bank, and their great support for the forum comes in light of their belief in its role in achieving great benefits for the entire region and the world.
At the end of his speech, the minister expressed Egypt and the participating countries ’confidence in achieving tangible results during the current year, which will contribute to establishing a prosperous and sustainable future in the region.
The forum was attended by the Cypriot minister of energy, trade and industry; the Greek minister of environment and energy; the Israeli minister of energy; the under-secretary of the ministry of economic development in Italy; the advisor to the Palestinian president for economic affairs; and the representative of the Jordanian Ministry of Energy.
The forum was also attended by the deputy assistant US secretary of energy, head of the strategic sectors for Europe and foreign affairs at the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, as well as the European Union ambassador to Cairo and a representative of the World Bank.