Egypt and Jordan have signed a deal to export Egyptian natural gas through a pipeline to Jordan as part of a 30-year agreement starting in 2003, Jordanian and Egyptian officials have said. The pipeline would have a capacity of 1 billion cubic metres of gas in the first year, according to a Jordanian official who spoke on condition of anonymity. Abdelaziz said the Middle East Gas Co., a joint venture between Egypt’s government and private interests, would build the pipeline from Egypt to Jordan at a cost of USD 300–330 million. The pipeline from the Egyptian Mediterranean city of El-Arish to the Jordanian Red Sea coastal town of Aqaba will take 18 months to build, he added. The pipeline to Jordan is the first stage of a USD 1 billion deal signed by Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan and Syria in January to export Egyptian natural gas to markets in the Middle East and Europe through two pipelines.