Answer given by Mr Arias Cañete on behalf of the Commission
The Palestinian Authority (PA) awarded in 1999 a 25-year exploration license for the marine area off the Gaza Strip (called Gaza Marine) to a consortium of the BG Group (British multinational oil and gas company) for 90% and the Consolidated Contractors Company (CCC) for 10%.
The BG Group, which discovered the Gaza Marine field about 36 kilometres offshore in 2000, has recently merged with Shell.
The field has not been developed to date.
The Office of the Quartet has established an Energy Task Force aiming at facilitating discussions among key stakeholders (including Israeli and Palestinian key authorities and the private sector) on the energy sector.
In parallel, the European Union has assisted the PA in the restructuring of the hydrocarbon sector in 2014-2016. The Netherlands is now preparing to assist the PA in implementing about 50% of the action plan for the restructuring of the hydrocarbon sector.
-  The Quartet is a group of entities (the United Nations, the United States, the European Union, and Russia) established in 2007 that works as mediator in the Middle East peace process and for the socioeconomic development of the West Bank, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem.