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New Mediterranean energy forum launched with Israel as member
Jerusalem Post ^ | SEPTEMBER 22, 2020 | LAHAV HARKOV

Posted on 09/22/2020 8:35:03 AM PDT by SJackson

The forum includes Egypt, Israel, Greece, Cyprus, Jordan, the Palestinian Authority and Italy.

Energy Ministers of seven countries, including Israel’s Yuval Steinitz, attended an event launching the new East Mediterranean Gas Forum (EMGF) in a virtual event hosted in Cairo on Tuesday morning.

“The blessing of gas brings regional cooperation with Arab and European countries, the first of its kind in history, including contracts to export $30 billion of blue-and-white gas to Jordan and Egypt, and that’s only the beginning,” Steinitz said.

The forum includes Egypt, Israel, Greece, Cyprus, Jordan, the Palestinian Authority and Italy, whose ambassadors, and Egyptian Energy Minister Tarek al-Mulla, signed the EMGF’s charter in Cairo. The ambassadors of countries interested in joining – France as a member and the US and EU as observers – were also in attendance.

Steinitz and al-Mulla initiated the EMGF’s establishment in 2017 following natural gas discoveries off of the coasts of Israel and Egypt. It existed at first to facilitate talks between the different countries, but Tuesday’s ceremony established it as an intergovernmental organization. The joint declaration on the EMGF’s launch said it “aims to serve as a platform that brings together gas producers, consumers and transit countries to create a shared vision and establish a structured systematic policy dialogue on natural gas, leading to the development of a sustainable regional gas market and unlocking the full gas resource potential in the region for the benefit and welfare of its people.”

The forum also includes a Gas Industry Advisory Committee, an ongoing dialogue between governments and business partners, to help monetize the gas reserves.

The Energy Ministry said Israel’s membership in the forum will give it major advantages in promoting shared goals in the natural gas market’s development and help Israel export gas to its neighbors and to Europe.

On a diplomatic level, it could contribute to further normalization and ties between Israel and countries in the region, and improve Israel’s standing with countries with which it already has diplomatic relations.

The EMGF and gas exploration more broadly is a point of tension between Turkey and other countries in the region, especially Greece and Cyprus. Last year, Turkey claimed areas of the Eastern Mediterranean that Greece and Cyprus control are part of its own exclusive economic zone (EEZ) and its exploration and naval activities in those areas has heightened tensions in the region.

The forum’s launch statement says it will “contribute to advancing regional stability and prosperity, creating an environment of trust…and neighborly relations.” It also says that any country in the Eastern Mediterranean can apply for membership, and any other country or international organization can apply to be an observer, as long as it shares the EMGF’s goals. Gabriel Mitchell, an expert on energy and geopolitics in the Eastern Mediterranean at Mitvim- The Israeli Institute For Regional Foreign Policies applauded the EMGF charter’s signing, but warned that recent events have pushed the region’s energy dreams farther out of reach.

“The pandemic triggered a collapse in global energy prices; international companies have frozen their operations in the Eastern Mediterranean,” Mitchel said. “Today, the region's focus has shifted from energy cooperation to maritime border disputes. Today's signing is meaningful, but muted by the changing economic and geopolitical landscape.”

TOPICS: Egypt; Israel; News/Current Events; Russia; Syria; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: abrahamaccords; cyprus; egypt; erdogan; europeanunion; gaza; greece; hamas; hassannasrallah; hezbollah; iran; isis; israel; italy; jerusalem; jordan; kurdistan; lebanon; letshavejerusalem; mohammedbinzayed; nato; receptayyiperdogan; russia; sinai; syria; turkey; uae; unitedarabemirates; waronterror

1 posted on 09/22/2020 8:35:03 AM PDT by SJackson
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To: dennisw; Cachelot; Nix 2; veronica; Catspaw; knighthawk; Alouette; Optimist; weikel; Lent; GregB; ..
Middle East and terrorism, occasional political and Jewish issues Ping List. High Volume If you’d like to be on or off, please FR mail me.


2 posted on 09/22/2020 8:35:58 AM PDT by SJackson (wondered...what 10 Commandments would have looked like if Moses had run them through..Congress, RR)
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To: SJackson

Winning-even if we’re not benefitting directly.

3 posted on 09/22/2020 8:56:39 AM PDT by DIRTYSECRET (urope. Why do they put up with this.)
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Part of untangling ourselves from Middle-East politics.

Neutering Iran, empowering Israel, neutralizing the PLO - more winning!

4 posted on 09/22/2020 9:21:49 AM PDT by Psalm 73 ("I will now proceed to entangle the entire area")
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Israeli Technology is key for everyone in the region. Think countries are starting to see what the benefits of allying with Israel will be.

5 posted on 09/22/2020 9:23:47 AM PDT by EQAndyBuzz (Cloward-Piven is finally upon us.)
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To: Psalm 73

If anyone has a chance to open the Palestinians eyes as to how much they are being used it will be Trump’s. He is that last best chance

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To: AdmSmith; AnonymousConservative; Arthur Wildfire! March; Berosus; Bockscar; cardinal4; ColdOne; ...

7 posted on 09/22/2020 12:58:20 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (Imagine an imaginary menagerie manager imagining managing an imaginary menagerie.)
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