Two Qatari LNG tankers to head to Egypt on Thursday

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A third shipment of liquefied natural gas donated by Qatar to Egypt to help alleviate its energy crisis set sail early on Thursday, and a fourth is expected to leave in the evening, Qatar’s state news agency (QNA) said.

Citing an unidentified official at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, QNA said a fifth and final gift shipment was expected to be loaded next month.

QNA said late on Monday the second tanker left Qatar’s Ras Laffan gas export terminal on Aug. 9, a week after the first cargo.

Before the Egyptian army removed Doha-backed Islamist President Mohammed Mursi from power in July, Qatar had agreed to supply Egypt with five shipments to help alleviate fuel shortages which cause frequent power cuts in summer.

Qatar’s foreign ministry has asked for the release of jailed Muslim Brotherhood leaders and condemned the Egyptian security forces’ clearing of pro-Mursi protests which has left hundreds dead across the country over the last few weeks.

Because Egypt lacks the facilities to unload the LNG, the cargoes are expected to be handed to foreign firms GDF Suez and BG Group which have not received agreed Egyptian gas supplies.

The cargoes will help Cairo channel more of its own gas to the domestic market.

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