Middle East / Africa

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Summary | Profile

Country profile: Israel

Location: Middle East, bordering the Mediterranean Sea, between Egypt and Lebanon
Climate: temperate; hot and dry in southern and eastern desert areas
Terrain: Negev desert in the south; low coastal plain; central mountains; Jordan Rift Valley
Size: 20770 sq. km total (Land area: 20330 sq. km  Water area: 440 sq.km)
Population: 7,112,359
Languages: Hebrew (official), Arabic used officially for Arab minority, English most commonly used foreign language
Government: parliamentary democracy
Capital city: Jerusalem
Legal system: mixture of English common law, British Mandate regulations, and, in personal matters, Jewish, Christian, and Muslim legal systems; in December 1985, Israel informed the UN Secretariat that it would no longer accept compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
Currency: new Israeli shekel (ILS); note - NIS is the curren

Country profile

Following World War II, the British withdrew from their mandate of Palestine, and the UN partitioned the area into Arab and Jewish states, an arrangement rejected by the Arabs. Subsequently, the Israelis defeated the Arabs in a series of wars without ending the deep tensions between the two sides. The territories Israel occupied since the 1967 war are not included in the Israel country profile, unless otherwise noted.

On 25 April 1982, Israel withdrew from the Sinai pursuant to the 1979 Israel-Egypt Peace Treaty. In keeping with the framework established at the Madrid Conference in October 1991, bilateral negotiations were conducted between Israel and Palestinian representatives and Syria to achieve a permanent settlement. Israel and Palestinian officials signed on 13 September 1993 a Declaration of Principles (also known as the "Oslo Accords") guiding an interim period of Palestinian self-rule. Outstanding territorial and other disputes with Jordan were resolved in the 26 October 1994 Israel-Jordan Treaty of Peace.

In addition, on 25 May 2000, Israel withdrew unilaterally from southern Lebanon, which it had occupied since 1982. In April 2003, US President BUSH, working in conjunction with the EU, UN, and Russia - the "Quartet" - took the lead in laying out a roadmap to a final settlement of the conflict by 2005, based on reciprocal steps by the two parties leading to two states, Israel and a democratic Palestine. However, progress toward a permanent status agreement was undermined by Israeli-Palestinian violence between September 2003 and February 2005. An Israeli-Palestinian agreement reached at Sharm al-Sheikh in February 2005, along with an internally-brokered Palestinian ceasefire, significantly reduced the violence. In the summer of 2005, Israel unilaterally disengaged from the Gaza Strip, evacuating settlers and its military while retaining control over most points of entry into the Gaza Strip.

The election of HAMAS in January 2006 to head the Palestinian Legislative Council froze relations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA). Ehud OLMERT became prime minister in March 2006; following an Israeli military operation in Gaza in June-July 2006 and a 34-day conflict with Hizballah in Lebanon in June-August 2006, he shelved plans to unilaterally evacuate from most of the West Bank. OLMERT in June 2007 resumed talks with the PA after HAMAS seized control of the Gaza Strip and PA President Mahmoud ABBAS formed a new government without HAMAS.

Energy production and consumption

Oil Gas
Production: 100 bbl/day (2006 est.) 709 million cu m (2005 est.)
Consumption: 249,500 bbl/day (2006 est.) 709 million cu m (2005 est.)
Exports: 75,980 bbl/day (2004 est.)  
Imports: 315,200 bbl/day (2004 est.)  
Reserves: 2 million bbl (1 January 2006 est.) 37 billion cu m (2006 est.)
Major fields:

Israel - recent news

18 Aug 19
Israel: Zion Oil & Gas signs agreement to begin 3D seismic acquisition in Israel
Zion Oil & Gas has signed an agreement with Acoustic Geophysical Services, an international seismic company based in Budapest, Hungary, to acquire 3D seismic over its Megiddo-Jezreel license area, onshore Israel.
31 Jul 19
Israel: Energean awarded four further licences in Israel’s Exclusive Economic Zone ('EEZ')
Energean Oil and Gas has announced that Israel’s Petroleum Council has awarded the Company four new licences for oil and gas exploration in the Israeli EEZ.
21 Jul 19
Israel: Five companies bid on 12 new exploration blocks offshore Israel
Israel's Ministry of Energy has announced that the second Israeli offshore licensing round has ended and that five companies submitted proposals for oil and gas exploration in 12 new blocks in Israel's Exclusive Economic Zone.
17 Jul 19
Israel: Zion Oil & Gas acquiring 3D seismic onshore Israel
Zion Oil & Gas has entered into binding agreements for 3D seismic acquisition across its 99,000-acre Megiddo-Jezreel license area onshore Israel.
25 Jun 19
Israel: Energean signs agreement with INGL for the transfer of near shore and onshore infrastructure
Energean Oil and Gas has signed a Detailed Agreement with Israel Natural Gas Lines ('INGL') for the transfer of title of the near shore and onshore part of the infrastructure that will deliver gas from the Karish and Tanin FPSO into the Israeli national gas transmission grid.

Israel - more news

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