CAIRO, March 9 (Reuters) - Egypt has set the price of shale gas expected to be extracted from a recent concession to foreign firms at $5.45 per million British thermal units (mmBtu), an official at the oil ministry said on Monday.
Egypt signed its first contract to extract gas by hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, in a deal with Apache and Shell Egypt in December that includes investments of $30-$40 million, the oil ministry said at the time.
"The shale gas agreement signed with Shell Egypt and Apache Corporation provides for a price of $5.45 per mmBtu of gas extracted," the official, who declined to be identified, told Reuters.
Under the contract, three horizontal wells as deep as 14,000 feet in Western Sahara fields will be drilled.
"The shale gas agreement is at an experimental stage for a year while we make sure the search for shale gas is feasible," the source said.
Egypt aims to boost domestic production and foreign imports of oil and gas to help address persistent energy shortages. (Reporting by Ehab Farouk; writing by Shadi Bushra; editing by Yara Bayoumy and Jason Neely)