Israel wants to revolutionize energy in the Middle East

Two Israeli energy giants have announced plans to jointly develop major renewable energy projects in the Middle East and North Africa as the country works to normalize relations with former enemies.

Israeli NewMed, formerly Delek Drilling – the company behind the giant gas discoveries in the Levant basin – and Enlight Energy intend to launch a "revolution" of renewable energy throughout the region, with particular attention to Saudi Arabia and the 'Oman, two countries with which Israel has not formally normalized relations, as reported by the Israel Times.

Companies are also focusing on Morocco, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, as well as Egypt and Jordan.

Two years ago, the United States brokered the Abrahamic Accords , which saw Israel normalize relations with the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Morocco. Israel has also signed a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with the UAE. There has been no official normalization of ties between Israel and Saudi Arabia or Oman, even though the Israeli media describes the relationship as "hot" and "secretive".

On Wednesday, Israel also formally normalized relations with Turkey, which has strong ties to the MENA region.

In June, Israel and Egypt, which already have gas export agreements, signed another agreement with the European Union to increase gas exports to the bloc as an alternative to Russian gas.

NewMed and Enlight are planning a number of projects across the MENA area, including solar, wind and energy storage facilities. NewMed is a veteran of natural resource development, having discovered the giant Tamar and Leviathan gas fields off Israel as Delek. Enlight, on the other hand, develops and finances clean energy projects globally.

"As we have brought the gas revolution to the countries of the region, so we will try to bring the revolution of renewable energy," said the CEO of NewMed Energy, Yossi Abu, according to the Israeli newspaper.

The normalization of Israel's relations with MENA countries is the result of its newfound potential for energy independence thanks to massive gas developments in the Mediterranean, which also give it greater leverage to establish diplomatic ties.

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This is a machine translation of a post published on Scenari Economici at the URL on Thu, 18 Aug 2022 12:10:15 +0000.