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10 مايو 2017 10:57 م
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John Casson: I am proud that Britain is Egypt’s number one economic partner

John Casson: I am proud that Britain is Egypt’s number one economic partner

British Ambassador to Egypt John Casson attended the celebration for the inauguration of the gas field of British Petroleum (BP), opened by President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi and the group Chief Executive of BP Bob Dudley. The inauguration is the fruit of a long-term partnership between Egypt and British companies including a series of meetings stretching back as the 2015 Sharm El-Sheikh Conference between the group Chief Executive Bob Dudley, government officials and between the British Ambassador John Casson.

BP announced today the start of production of natural gas from the first two fields of development project west of the Nile Delta, Torres and Libra fields, ahead of schedule by eight months and with less than the set budget.

At peak production in 2019, the total production of the two projects is expected to reach about 1.5 billion cubic feet per day, equivalent to about 30% of Egypt's current natural gas production.

This announcement is part of a new wave of investments made by British companies that proves the British appetite for investing in and supporting the Egyptian economy.

British Ambassador to Egypt said: “The new gas today from Egypt’s giant new field shows Britain supports Egypt with more investments than other countries do, with nearly 50% of all investment flows. BP is investing $13bn in five years to make Egypt the new energy superpower. That’s more from one British company than the entire IMF loan.”

“British investment gives Egypt exactly the fuel it needs. Not adding to Egypt’s debt. Not dollars flowing out of Egypt for imports. British investment means foreign currency in the bank for Egypt, jobs for Egyptians and a world class energy supply for Egypt.”

“I am proud that Britain is Egypt’s number one economic partner in good times and bad – our companies kept investing in 2011, in 2013 and we will be investing for many years to come. To give Egyptians the future they deserve, Egypt does not need aid. Egypt needs trade.”

In this decade alone, UK companies have invested $43 billion in Egypt, making it the number one foreign investor in the country with almost half of all investment since 2011. It is not just the petroleum industry that the UK invests in:

· In telecommunications: Vodafone recently acquired a EGP3.5 billion 4G licence in addition to its EGP35 billion in investment in Egypt to date.

· In consumer goods: Unilever opened a new factory in Egypt in October – the largest in the Middle East in terms of production capacity – following a EGP220 million investment.

· In pharmaceuticals: GSK has invested over $800 million in Egypt and is the largest British investment in the Health Sector and Pharma field in Egypt, with a workforce of 1,700 employees.

· AstraZeneca: 2 major investments in 2016. Capital increase with value of $20 million. A new, fully automated packaging line representing investment of $2.7 million that increased capacity by 50% to serve Egyptian patients.

The UK has also welcomed Egypt’s steps towards reform with a $150m loan guarantee to underwrite Egypt’s borrowing from the IMF, as well as technical advice on the reform initiatives. The support for the reform was coupled with £2 million to beneficiary programme that benefit low-income Egyptians.



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