Israel’s NewMed Energy on Tuesday announced that it signed a deal with the Moroccan energy and mining ministry, as well as Adarco Energy, for offshore natural gas exploration and production off the coast of Morocco.
NewMed and Adarco will each hold a 37.5 percent stake in the exploitation license rights, and Morocco’s National Hydrocarbons and Mining Ministry will have the remaining 25 percent.
The permit is for the Boujdour Atlantique gas field, located in the southern part of Morocco’s offshore economic zone, and was granted for eight years. The plan – which still requires regulatory approval from Rabat – is for NewMed and Adarco to carry out geological and geophysical analyses and eventually conduct exploratory drilling by mid-2025.
Natural gas has already strengthened Israel’s diplomatic standing with its Arab neighbors Jordan and Egypt by selling them gas. This deal shows that Israel is now also selling its expertise in discovery and extraction.
It’s also another sign that on a practical level, Israel’s normalization with Morocco is proving to be the most fruitful when it comes to security and business.
“For a long time now we have recognized a huge potential in Morocco for collaborations in both the natural gas and renewable energy sectors,” said NewMed CEO Yossi Abu. “Today’s announcement will make NewMed Energy the leading energy entity in the eastern Mediterranean and north Africa region.”
NewMed is the main stakeholder in Israel’s Leviathan offshore gas field and is looking to merge with Britain’s Capricorn Energy to create a gas producer focused on the Jewish state and Egypt.