Israeli pipeline company to transport UAE oil to Europe
The Israeli state-owned Europe-Asia Pipeline Company (EAPC) said that it had signed a memorandum of understanding with MED-RED Land Bridge, a company with both Israel and Emirati owners, on Monday in Abu Dhabi.
The oil will be transported through a pipeline, which links Eilat to Ashkelon, two Israeli ports on the Red and Mediterranean seas respectively.
However, Reuters said that this deal would be "one of the most significant partnerships to emerge so far" from the UAE-Israel normalisation agreement, which has been loudly condemned by Palestinians.
"There is no doubt that this agreement is of high importance to the Israeli market, both economically and strategically, with joint investments extending a decade into the future," EAPC Chairman Erez Halfon was quoted by Reuters as saying.
Under the deal, the UAE and Israel hope to create a "land bridge", which would not only carry oil between the UAE and Europe, but also allow Asian countries faster access to oil producing areas of the Mediterranean and the Black Sea.
Most of the UAE’s oil exports go to Asia.
The "land bridge" would bypass the Suez Canal, and save fuel and other transportation costs.
The Suez Canal is a major economic lifeline for Egypt and there have been reports of tension between Egypt and the UAE ever since the latter established relations with Israel, amid talk of a joint Israeli-UAE "rival Suez Canal", which could be constructed through Israeli territory.