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The issue of whether a party wishing to carry out oil exploration activities in Egypt needs to have a permanent establishment in Egypt in order to do so is often raised by non-Egyptian bidders for oil and gas concessions. In order to resolve this issue, various legal provisions must be considered.

Recently international oil prices have hit an unprecedented high of $67.90 per barrel as a result of political disturbances around the world. This raised concern in Egypt that the government would be forced to adopt a new fuel pricing policy. The concern turned out to be well founded, as on July 20 2006 a new decree raised fuel prices by up to 30%.

Egyptian legal commentators and government officials have called for the abolition of the requirement that Parliament issue a law to grant concessions, including concessions for the exploration and exploitation of oil and gas fields. However, these calls have been challenged by those who want to maintain the guarantee provided by the requirement to the public and international investors.

Two new bidding rounds for the exploration and exploitation of crude oil and natural gas have been announced by Egyptian companies. The rounds are open until July 2006, and provide further evidence that activities and investments in the Egyptian oil and gas sectors are on the increase.

Including: Background; Structure and Policy; Oil and Gas Regime; Minerals and Natural Resources; Electricity; and Environmental Considerations.