Making a short story long: The construction of the Suez-Mediterranean oil pipeline in Egypt, 1967-1977

Elie Podeh*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations

Abstract

The idea to construct a pipeline from Suez to the Mediterranean (SUMED) was initially raised before the 1967 War. With the closure of the Suez Canal following the war, the pipeline could offer a less expensive route for Gulf oil. However, the pipeline was inaugurated only in 1977, following three wars and debilitating negotiations between Egypt and foreign institutions. This article analyzes the motives for the project as well as the reasons for the long delay in its implementation. Anticipated financial profits were a major consideration for both the governments concerned and the oil companies. Yet the project was launched only after the parties involved realized that its construction also entailed significant political advantages and after the security risks were eliminated. In recent years, SUMED and the Suez Canal have become major transportation routes for crude oil, transforming Egypt into an actor in the oil market.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)61-88
Number of pages28
JournalBusiness History Review
Volume78
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2004

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