By Mohamed Khabisah
Jordan and Israel have signed an agreement allowing Jordan’s National Electricity Company to purchase natural gas from Israel’s Leviathan gas-field, Israeli public radio reported Monday.
"With this deal, Israel will supply Jordan with about 45 billion cubic meters of gas -- worth a total of $10 billion -- over the coming 15 years," the broadcaster reported.
In a Monday statement, the Jordanian gas firm confirmed it had signed an agreement with U.S. energy concern Noble Energy for the supply of roughly 40 percent of its natural gas needs from Israel’s Leviathan gas-field.
The deal, the statement read, "enhances opportunities for regional cooperation and makes Jordan part of regional projects by the European Union and the Union for the Mediterranean aimed at taking advantage of gas finds in the eastern Mediterranean".
Speaking to Anadolu Agency recently, Jordanian Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs Jawad al-Anani had described Israeli natural gas as "one of the less expensive alternatives we are studying".
"We don’t know whether or not we’ll sign the agreement; this depends on the outcome of ongoing negotiations," al-Anani said.
The deal comes despite widespread disapproval in Jordan for the notion of buying Israeli energy. The past two years have seen a number of popular demonstrations in Amman against the proposed import of gas from the Jewish state.Anadolu Agency website contains only a portion of the news stories offered to subscribers in the AA News Broadcasting System (HAS), and in summarized form. Please contact us for subscription options.