Mostefa Ouki

Senior Research Fellow

Dr Mostefa Ouki is an independent energy consultant and has thirty years of experience in developing, executing, and managing gas and energy-related techno-economic projects throughout the world.  He led numerous consulting and advisory assignments commissioned by governments; national and international energy companies; and, international financial institutions.  He also executed and led a number of assignments on the planning and implementation of oil, gas and petrochemical infrastructure projects in key hydrocarbon producing countries in the Middle East and North Africa region.

Dr Ouki worked closely with government and private sector decision makers in a number of countries on the formulation, funding and implementation of energy and infrastructure projects and policies. He advised project lenders and financial advisors on the development of energy and infrastructure projects, including gas-to-power projects; gas-based petrochemical projects; and, cross-border gas pipeline and LNG projects. He is also involved in work sponsored by international organizations on energy for sustainable development.

Dr Ouki started his career with the gas exports division of Algeria’s national oil and gas company, Sonatrach, in Algiers, and worked in Washington, D.C. as a consultant on gas development projects for the World Bank.  He was Vice President in Nexant’s Energy & Chemicals Advisory division based in London. Prior to Nexant, he was with Bechtel and Penspen.

Dr Ouki holds a diplôme d’ingénieur d’état in petroleum engineering economics from Algeria’s Institut National des Hydrocarbures and MSc in Energy Resources, MA and PhD in Economics from the University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA.  He is a member of the American Economic Association; Association of International Petroleum Negotiators; the International Association of Energy Economics and the Society of Petroleum Engineers.

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                    [post_content] => Over the last five years, Africa’s MSGBC geological basin situated in five African countries: Mauritania, Senegal, Gambia, Guinea Bissau, and Guinea Conakry has started to attract increased interest from international oil and gas companies (IOCs). The Grand Tortue Ahmeyim (GTA) gas field development project, overlapping Mauritania and Senegal’s offshore waters, is a key example. This project is a unique case of cooperation and partnership between two African countries and IOCs (BP and Kosmos Energy) in a potentially new African natural gas province.

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                    [post_content] => Over the last three decades, several studies have been conducted into the elusive development of regional or sub-regional natural gas networks to encourage gas trade within the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. However, due to commercial and non-commercial factors, the trade of natural gas within the region or sub-regions remains either limited or non-existent. In the short to medium term, could the unprecedented multi-dimensional crisis situation of oil and gas price collapses combined with the highly damaging coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, lead MENA gas exporters to focus more on their domestic markets? With a gas demand/price meltdown in Europe and Asia, intra-regional gas sales could be interesting to consider.
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                    [post_content] => Algeria is at a critical stage in its history. Since February 2019, people of all strata have been taking to the street to press for radical political changes. This will undoubtedly have far-reaching implications for the country’s future and its economy. An economy that has long been driven by the hydrocarbon sector and where oil and gas exports still account for over 95 per cent of total export revenue. Algeria’s hydrocarbon endowment is dominated by its larger natural gas reserves compared to crude oil. The country, which has been producing, consuming and exporting natural gas for several decades, has reached a point where its gas balance is facing severe challenges. A declining or, at best, stagnating natural gas production and a rapid domestic gas consumption growth have combined to constrain dangerously the country’s gas export potential. The reduction of gas export revenue has led to some government energy policy responses, including a revised hydrocarbons law (yet-to-be issued) to relaunch upstream investments in partnership with international oil and gas companies. But, actions to address the issue of subsidized domestic electricity and gas prices remain absent. There is hope, though, that this state of affairs that has lasted for decades at a very high financial cost could be addressed gradually. The reasons for a potentially fundamental policy change are mainly the fact that the Algerian economy can no longer afford this heavy financial burden and the impact of the on-going political transformation.
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                    [post_content] => In 2015, Egypt became a net gas importer. This unfortunate, but not unexpected, situation was the result of a decline in Egypt’s indigenous natural gas production combined with a rapidly rising domestic gas demand driven mainly by large energy price subsidies. Major changes are presently taking place on the gas supply side which are significantly impacting the country’s natural gas balance. The Egyptian government is also carrying out energy price reform measures to reduce gas demand growth and the financial burden of price subsidies. But, without the continued implementation of consistent and integrated energy demand-side management and reform measures, Egypt could again be exposed to an unpleasant gas supply surplus/deficit cycle.  The quick answer to the question posed in this paper’s title ‘Egypt – a return to a balanced gas market?’ could be: yes, but not for long. However, this short statement would not do justice to the considerable efforts deployed by all the relevant stakeholders in relaunching Egypt’s hydrocarbon sector. It would also ignore the fact that the answer is only based on current publicly available data and information on both the supply and demand sides.
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Latest Publications by Mostefa Ouki