Israel wants to help the European Union with the supply of natural gas as the EU countries want to completely stop importing Russian gas and oil as soon as possible because of the Russian war in Ukraine. The EU countries have already agreed to jointly purchase new energy and accelerate the transition to sustainable, non-fossil fuels.
The EU has signed a natural gas export agreement with Israel and Egypt. The deal has been in the works since March. According to the Israeli Ministry of Energy, the move will enable "significant" exports of Israeli gas to Europe for the first time.
The gas will be brought through existing pipelines to Egypt's LNG terminals, where it can be liquefied before being transported on tankers to Europe.
Israel is busy increasing its extraction from gas fields in the Mediterranean. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen is in Israel to discuss supplying Israeli natural gas to Europe. There is also talk of building a gas pipeline across the Mediterranean to Greece and Cyprus. Von der Leyen is also going to Egypt.
Other possibilities include the proposed Eastmed pipeline, an ambitious and costly project that would connect the gas fields to mainland Europe, or a shorter pipeline to Turkey.
Von der Leyen said Moscow is using Europe's reliance on Russian gas as a means of blackmail, and has already turned off the gas to several European countries. Israeli gas would help Europe diversify energy resources, along with the supply of other countries, such as the United States and Qatar.
“The hope is to bring about a relatively quick work process and reach a framework agreement as early as the summer,” said Lior Schillat, director-general of Israel's Ministry of Energy, recently on a visit to a roughly 90-plus gas field. km off the coast of Israel, which will be online later this year.