State-owned Egyptian Electricity Holding Company signed an agreement with Germany's Siemens Energy to develop an hydrogen-based industry focused on exports in the country.
The companies will develop a pilot project with 100 to 200 megawatts of electrolyser capacity to drive early technology development, search for potential offtakers and also define logistics. They will also work on investment, technology transfer and implementation of projects related to hydrogen production, tapping into the North African state's renewable capacity.
"This emerging industry has the capacity to significantly decarbonise industry and expand economic diversity," said Christian Bruch, president and chief executive of Siemens Energy.
"The development of a homegrown hydrogen ecosystem and value chain in Egypt has the potential to deliver a more sustainable and prosperous future for Egyptians.”
Egypt, the Arab world’s most populous country, aims to generate 42 per cent of its electricity from renewable energy sources by 2035 while delivering one of the lowest generation tariffs on the continent.
Hydrogen has an estimated $11 trillion market potential, according to Bank of America Securities, and is expected to generate $2.5tn in direct revenues and $11tn of indirect infrastructure by 2050 as its production increases six-fold.
Countries in the Middle East, particularly Gulf oil exporters, are investing heavily in lower-carbon forms of hydrogen, particularly blue hydrogen, made from gas.
Hydrogen has emerged as a potential alternative fuel in the Middle East, which is looking to rapidly decarbonise amid a global momentum towards reaching net zero emissions by 2050.