Sunday, November 2, 2008

Egyptian Natural Gas to Lebanon

BEIRUT, Nov. 1 (Xinhua) -- Lebanese Energy and Water Minister Alan Tabourian said natural gas shipments to be used for electricity production, will begin to arrive from Egypt to Lebanon at the beginning of 2009, local Daily Star reported Saturday.

"Egypt assured us that Lebanon will receive natural gas at the beginning of 2009 and would supply it until 2013," he said on Friday.

Importing electricity from Egypt was too expensive, and "simply too high for Lebanon," said Tabourian.

The Lebanese government hopes to reduce the national energy bill by 30 percent by switching from oil to natural gas.

Successive governments in the past have failed to deal with the power sector's problems despite studies by international agencies, the report said.

The International Monetary Fund and donor countries are pressing the Lebanese government to find a radical solution for the electricity crisis, linking any future funds to reforms in this sector.

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