Israel and Egypt plan to spice up gasoline exports to Europe underneath an settlement signed throughout a Cairo go to Wednesday (15 June) by the European Fee president because the bloc seeks to wean itself off Russian gasoline.
Ursula von der Leyen additionally pledged aid price €100 million for meals safety in Egypt, which has been reeling from grain shortages because of the Ukraine conflict.
“Russia’s conflict in opposition to Ukraine has uncovered our European dependency on Russian fossil fuels, and we wish to eliminate this dependency,” von der Leyen advised a joint press convention with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.
“We wish to diversify to reliable suppliers, and Egypt is a reliable companion.”
She had vowed on Tuesday, throughout a go to to Israel, to confront Russia for its use of fossil fuels to “blackmail” European international locations.
The memorandum of understanding on gasoline exports between Egypt, Israel and the EU was signed on the East Mediterranean Fuel Discussion board on Wednesday (15 June).
It says the three sides “will endeavour to work collectively in direction of enabling a secure supply of
pure gasoline to the EU that’s in step with long-term decarbonisation goals and is predicated on the precept of market-oriented pricing”.
It additionally states that Israeli gasoline “could also be shipped” through LNG infrastructure in Egypt.
Underneath a landmark $15 billion deal in 2020, Israel already exports gasoline from an offshore subject to Egypt, the place it’s liquefied and shipped to European international locations.
However a big enhance in gasoline exports from Israel through Egypt would require main long-term infrastructure investments.
Von der Leyen additionally stated Egypt had solar and wind energy, “the energies of the longer term”, in abundance, and that the EU and Egypt collectively exploring them was in “our frequent curiosity”.
“We’re beginning to faucet into the complete potential of EU-Egypt relations, by placing the clear power transition and the struggle in opposition to local weather change on the coronary heart of our partnership,” she stated in a assertion.
Von der Leyen pledged “instant aid of 100 million euros” to help meals safety in Egypt, the Arab world’s most populous nation, which has relied on Russia and Ukraine for over 80% of its wheat.
“It is rather necessary that right here we stand collectively, globally, to handle this meals safety disaster, that we discover options which can be honest for everyone, that we take a look at the distribution of grain, for instance, worldwide, and that we actually have an emphasis on weak international locations,” von der Leyen stated.
She additionally pledged €3 billion in “agriculture and diet, water and sanitation programmes over the subsequent years right here within the area”.
“The European Union may be very considering investing within the native meals manufacturing,” she stated.
“It’s so necessary for us that within the area, the manufacturing of meals is improved and elevated, and thus the dependency from different areas is lowered,” she stated.
“Over time this can guarantee secure provides of high quality and inexpensive meals for all… Egypt will probably be on the coronary heart of this main shift.”
Sisi stated von der Leyen’s first official go to builds on the current “intense momentum” of Egyptian relations with the EU.
Throughout her Israel go to, von der Leyen had accused Moscow of intentionally reducing off gasoline equipped to European international locations “in retaliation for our help to Ukraine”.
“This can be a large step ahead within the power provide to Europe, but additionally for Egypt to turn into a regional power hub,” she stated in Cairo.
Egypt will host the UN COP27 local weather convention in Sharm el-Sheikh in November.
Later Wednesday, von der Leyen travelled to Jordan, the place she met with King Abdullah II, calling Jordan “an important companion for the EU” in feedback on Twitter.
“You’ve gotten an important position to play within the stability and prosperity of the area,” she stated.