The oil ministers of Egypt and Israel have met to discuss the hand-over to Egypt of the Sinai oil fields, and the supply of crude oil to Israel.
The oil ministers of Egypt and Israel have met to discuss the hand-over to Egypt of the Sinai oil fields, and the supply of crude oil to Israel. The fields are due to be handed back by Israel later this under the terms of the peace treaty signed by the two countries in Washington last month.
SYNOPSIS: Egyptian oil minister Ahmed Ezzeddin Hilal said the hand-over was the first step in the implementation of the treaty, now that both governments have approved it.
The meeting with Israeli minister Yitzhak Modai was to agree on oil-supplies to Israel after the hand-over in October. The fields, developed by the Israelis, supply them with twenty percent of their annual energy requirements.
The two men and their delegations visited the A-Tor fields in Southern Sinai, an area their opposing aries had sharply contested in several wars before the treaty signing.
Mr. Jilal spoke of his joy at seeing the fields, which will bring Egypt an extra two-hundred million dollars (U.S.) a year. Israel originally demanded oil at preferential prices, but agreed to bid on the open market after Washington assured her of supplies in any emergency. Israel has almost no other fuel sources, and has to import all her supplies.
Meanwhile, the Organisation of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) has banned the sale of oil to Egypt for signing the treaty.