Egypt breaks into the European energy market with the green hydrogen

Europe is heading to Egypt to produce green hydrogen

Dr. Mostafa Madbouly, the Egyptian Prime Minister, attended the signing ceremony of an agreement between the Ministry of Electricity and Renewable Energy, the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, and the Egyptian Navy with the Belgian “DEME” company. The agreement signed this March aims to start the studies on producing and exporting green hydrogen from Egypt.

Egypt has signed two international agreements in this field within two months. In addition to this agreement, Egypt signed an agreement of intent with the German company Siemens to start discussions and studies to implement a pilot project to produce green hydrogen in Egypt last month. Worth mentioning that the German company, Siemens, signed a similar agreement with Saudi Arabia on March 11th.

President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, recently held talks with the CEOs of a number of Belgian companies to cooperate within a consortium that includes “DEME”, the port company of “Antwerp,” and “Floxy” company, to invest in the production of green hydrogen for power generation. The consortium members affirmed their interest in expanding the production, transportation, and storage of green hydrogen as part of the European efforts to remove and reduce the carbon levels.

A hub for green hydrogen

International companies, including the Belgian consortium, express their keenness to cooperate with Egypt in this field due to its distinctive site characteristics and ideal natural resources. The Belgians pointed to the benefits that Egypt will get in return as well. These include the transfer of knowledge, cadres training, enhancement of port activities, and strategic access to the European energy market.

Dr. Mohamed Shaker said that the agreements that Egypt signed enable the country to start studies to implement a demonstration project to produce green hydrogen in Egypt as a step towards expansion in this field, leading to exporting. All this comes in line with the European Union’s strategy to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, known as the “Green Agreement” 2035-2050.

The new initiative aims to reduce the cost of green hydrogen to less than $2/kg, which will reduce emissions from the most carbon-intensive industries, including steel, shipping, freight, chemical production, and power generation.

Alan Bernard, Chairman of the Board of Directors of “DEME”, stated that the company conducted a specialized study for the best sites suitable for establishing green hydrogen central hubs. Egypt was at the top of the options due to its prominent location and its enjoyment of renewable energy sources, especially solar and wind energy, in addition to the availability of qualified land and marine infrastructure, skilled human resources, as well as the balance of the distinguished relations between Egypt and Belgium.

France taking the first steps

On the other hand, France showed its interest in investing in Egypt in the green hydrogen field. The French ambassador to Cairo, Stéphane Romette, and Fabio Grazi, director of the AFD branch in Egypt, met with the Minister of Electricity and Renewable Energy to discuss cooperation in green hydrogen production.

For his part, Eng. Ashraf Nasir, a member of the Supreme Council of the Engineers Syndicate and a Renewable Energy Consultant, said that Egypt possesses the necessary energy (5,100 MW of solar power expected to reach 6,200 MW by the end of the year) and capabilities to produce green hydrogen as a source of renewable energy. 

He added: “Egypt is in the process of pursuing the technological revolution of green hydrogen, and vigorous steps have begun, by benefiting from European expertise in what starts with 100 MW. That’s why President El-Sisi met with the Belgian companies to stand on the position of the matter. That is the reason as well for signing the agreement of intent with Siemens.”

Do you believe green hydrogen production costs could drop with such efforts? Could this finally make green hydrogen a viable green energy source? We certainly hope so, and we think that this is, at least, a move in the right direction.

Aasem Abuzeid

Aasem Abuzeid

Aasem Abuzeid is the Director for MENA Region. He acts as a leading marketer in Arabic-speaking countries. He is also the COO and lead-developer of NBN.
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