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Shell and its Joint Venture Partners have taken the Final Investment Decision on the Alam El Shawish West (AESW) gas development project, signaling the start of further development of the “Assil/Karam” gas fields. Shell Egypt & Badr El Din Petroleum Company (BAPETCO) operates the project, with a 40% stake, with partners Vegas 35% & GDF Suez 25%.

Shell Egypt successfully farmed into the Alam El Shawish West early 2010 after buying some shares from Vegas & GDF Suez. The AESW concession includes a number of discovered fields in the Western Desert along with exploration potential. Assil and Karam are two of the deepest discovered gas fields in the Western Desert with some oil layers.

“The investment decision in Karam and Assil confirms Shell Egypt strategy of focusing on our heartland and expanding Shell’s activities and investments in Egypt. Our plan is to increase our exploration efforts and actively develop our already discovered resources. As operator of the Alam el Shawish  West Concession, our technical and operational expertise and established Western Desert infrastructure will allow us to create maximum value for the country and all partners”, said Jeroen Regtien, Chairman of Shell Companies in Egypt.

“The Western Desert has represented the core of Shell Egypt business for the past three decades. The anticipated total production from Karam and Assil is 200 mmscf/d. We have received strong support from the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC) for our exploration and development activities and look forward to continued cooperation and successful activity in the area”, Jeroen added.

Eng. Abdallah Ghorab, Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, said: “Shell`s investment decision in the Western Desert area asserts the attractiveness of this promising area, unveiling its secrets, as one of the major areas for oil and gas production in Egypt.”

“I am very pleased with Shell’s investment decision in the Western Desert as it reflects the level of international confidence in Egypt’s oil & gas sector.” said Eng. Hany Dahy, EGPC CEO.