UAE’s Mubadala buys $1 billion stake in Israeli gas field

  The trade deal is the largest signed by an Israeli group and an Emirati group (AFP)

accomplished Israeli drilling company Delek A deal worth nearly $1 billion, to sell a 22% stake in Tamar gas field maritime in the eastern Mediterranean, to Mubadala Petroleum Company in Abu Dhabi.

Delek said in a statement today, Thursday, that this is the largest commercial deal signed by an Israeli and an Emirati group since Israel and the UAE normalized relations last year.

Mubadala Petroleum, a unit of the Abu Dhabi government-owned Mubadala Investment Company, said in April that the stake purchase was part of a strategic effort to obtain “high-quality” investments.

The two companies signed a preliminary agreement in April that requires government approval, noting that the Tamar field is one of the main energy sources in the occupation state and has a production capacity of 11 billion cubic meters of gas annually, which is enough to meet the needs of the Israeli market and export to Egypt and Jordan.

Delek Drilling, a subsidiary of Delek Group, owns a 22% stake in the field operated by the American company, Chevron.

Delek also owns a large stake in the much larger and nearby “Leviathan” gas field, and is selling the “Tamar” stake in compliance with government steps to open the market to more competition.

“A huge deal with a company from the Emirates, in addition to exporting gas to Egypt and Jordan, measures being taken on the ground and specifically indicates how to build a new Middle East,” said Yossi Abo, CEO of Delek.

New port in Haifa

On the other hand, the occupying power opened a new port for shipping on the Mediterranean coast, which is expected to open the way for much-needed competition in a sector suffering from delayed operations.

The Shanghai International Port Group will operate the 5.5 billion shekel ($1.7 billion) Gulf Port in Haifa, which will allow the berthing of larger forms of cargo ships of 18,000 containers or more. (One dollar = 3.2045 shekels).

(Reuters, The New Arab)

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