Egypt’s arrears to foreign oil firms fall to $900m at end of June: minister

Egypt owed foreign oil companies $2.4 billion in June 2017. (AFP)
Updated 11 July 2019

Egypt’s arrears to foreign oil firms fall to $900m at end of June: minister

  • Tarek El-Molla: Egypt’s total monthly payments to foreign oil companies stood at $700 million
  • Egypt owed foreign oil companies $2.4 billion in June 2017

CAIRO: Egypt’s arrears to foreign oil companies declined to $900 million at the end of June from $1.2 billion a year ago, the petroleum minister said on Thursday, adding that the remaining amount would be paid soon.
Tarek El-Molla also told Reuters that total monthly payments by Egypt to foreign oil companies stood at $700 million.
Italy’s ENI, BP, Royal Dutch Shell and Italian energy group Edison have dominated energy exploration work in Egypt in recent years.
Arrears to foreign oil companies piled up after the 2011 uprising that forced long-ruling President Hosni Mubarak to step down, reaching $6.3 billion in the 2011-12 fiscal year.
But they have been declining since 2014 as Egypt sought to become a regional energy hub.
Egypt owed foreign oil companies $2.4 billion in June 2017.
Molla said he hoped that the remaining arrears would be paid soon, but gave no specific time.
Cairo has pledged not to accumulate more arrears, part of its drive to draw new foreign investment to an energy sector that is attracting interest following several major gas discoveries.


Etihad launches more fuel-efficient Boeing 787 Dreamliner

Updated 4 min 28 sec ago

Etihad launches more fuel-efficient Boeing 787 Dreamliner

  • Etihad’s CEO Tony Douglas described the aircraft as a flying laboratory for testing that could benefit the entire industry
  • This year, Etihad flew the world’s first passenger flight using sustainable biofuel made from a plant that grows in saltwater
DUBAI: Abu Dhabi’s flagship carrier Etihad Airways announced on Monday it is launching one of the world’s most fuel-efficient long-haul airplanes as the company seeks to save costs on fuel and position itself as a more environmentally-conscious choice for travelers.
Etihad’s “Greenliner” is a Boeing 787 Dreamliner that will depart on its first route from Abu Dhabi to Brussels in January 2020. Etihad’s CEO Tony Douglas described the aircraft as a flying laboratory for testing that could benefit the entire industry.
With fuel costs eating up around a quarter of airline spending, Douglas said the goal of the Greenliner is to be 20 percent more fuel efficient than other aircraft in Etihad’s fleet.
“This is not just a box-ticking exercise,” he told reporters at the unveiling of the initiative at the Dubai Airshow alongside executives from Boeing.
Douglas said the aircraft “not only makes sense economically from a profit and loss account point of view, but because it also directly impacts the CO2 because of the fuel burn.”
Etihad has reported losses of $4.75 billion since 2016 as its strategy of aggressively buying stakes in airlines from Europe to Australia exposed the company to major risks.
Despite its financials, the airline continues to be among the most innovative.
This year, Etihad flew the world’s first passenger flight using sustainable biofuel made from a plant that grows in saltwater. It also became the first in the Middle East to operate a flight without any single-use plastics on board to raise awareness of the effects of plastic pollution.
Aviation accounts for a small but rapidly growing share of greenhouse-gas emissions — about 2.5 percent worldwide. But forecasters expect air travel to grow rapidly in the coming years.
Etihad says it plans to make the Greenliner a “social media star” to bring under sharper focus its developments and achievements worldwide. Douglas said anything that Eithad learns with Boeing from this aircraft’s operations will be open domain knowledge “because it’s about moving the industry forward in a responsible fashion.”
“We’re like a millennial and like all good millennials, they’re really focused on the environment and the sustainability agenda,” Douglas said, referring to Etihad’s 16 years in operation.
The Greenliner will be the only aircraft of its kind in Etihad’s fleet of Dreamliners. The company currently has 36 of the 787s in its fleet with plans to operate 50.
“This is a small step today, but in a very, very long journey,” Douglas said.