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House Republicans are pitching legislation cued up for a floor vote this week as a salve to high gasoline and electric costs, though it remains hazy how quickly and aggressively the measure would lower prices.

The bill contains no obvious provisions to help consumers, like direct subsidies or tax credits. Instead, Republicans said they hope tospur domestic oil and gas production, which they contend would lower prices and have some knock-on benefits.

“The main goal is to lower energy prices,” House Natural Resources Chairman Bruce Westerman, R-Ark., said in a recent interview. “But there’s some benefits that come along with that, like energy security and also national security. And in the process of that, you get economic growth in the U.S.”

The package would accelerate the permitting process under the National Environmental Policy Act, require more oil and gas lease sales, eliminate climate programs at the EPA and speed approval of liquefied natural gas, or LNG, exports, among other provisions.

The House Rules Committee is scheduled to meet at 3 p.m. Monday to consider the bill, which the Congressional Budget Office estimated would cut deficits by $11.6 billion over the next five years but increase them by $2.3 billion over a full decade. As of Friday, 147 amendments had been filed.

To have any shot at achieving their policy aims, Republicans will need to convince Democrats of the merits. The measure is not expected to draw much, if any, Democratic support in the House, and Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer, D-N.Y., has said the bill is “dead on arrival” in his chamber.

The White House on Monday said in a statement of administration policy that it strongly opposes the bill, saying it “would raise costs for American families by repealing household energy rebates and rolling back historic investments to increase access to cost-lowering clean energy technologies.”

If enacted, the bill wouldn’t lead to immediate new oil production, but it could quickly lower prices because oil operates in a futures market, House Majority Leader Steve Scalise, R-La., said in an interview. Higher oil output in the U.S., where companies rather than government agencies produce oil, is a cudgel against OPEC, the bloc of oil-producing nations, where countries with the largest reserves like Venezuela and Saudi Arabia can control supply to set higher prices, he said.

“So by saying America is open for business again, the prices will go down quickly because everybody will know that OPEC countries can’t control the supply anymore,” Scalise said.

In addition to OPEC, which holds about 80 percent of the world’s proven oil reserves, gasoline prices in the U.S. are subject to regional distribution differences, weather disturbances, refinery outages and global crises, like war.

For example, after the lone petroleum refinery in Colorado shut down in December because of cold weather, gasoline prices rose 51 percent in the state and 27 percent in the region. The shutdown caused the region to pull from refineries out of state, escalating prices, which climbed by $1.39 per gallon from Dec. 26 to Feb. 20, reaching $4.10 per gallon.

Electricity prices were also volatile last year, according to the Energy Information Administration, driven in part by extreme weather, including the January cold temperatures in New England and heat waves across Texas in July and the West in September.

Republicans’ legislation wouldn’t account for such market variables. There are also global influences that limit the impact of U.S. policies.

“Because energy prices are shaped primarily by global developments and not by U.S. monetary policy, there is a lot of uncertainty about the future course of energy inflation,” Philip Jefferson, a member of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors, said at Harvard University last month.

Jefferson said energy costs jumped after Russian troops invaded Ukraine last year but have fallen noticeably in more recent months.

After Russia invaded Ukraine, the Biden administration directed the sale of oil from the country’s reserve — the main lever American presidents can use, beyond jawboning oil markets, to make a difference in near-term oil prices.

Repealing methane fees

Another provision of the bill Republicans say could have an immediate impact on prices is repealing a fee from Democrats’ 2022 climate law that would charge fossil energy companies for their methane emissions: $900 per metric ton and $1,500 after two years.

Scalise said electric utilities are passing on the cost of the methane fee — despite the fact that the EPA has not implemented the fee, nor has it begun enforcing a separate regulation about methane leakage from oil and gas sites. The fee is scheduled to take effect next year.

“Families today are paying double-digit increases higher for their electricity costs in part due to those kinds of taxes,” he said. “So it’s hitting lower-income families in the gut at a time when they’re already paying too much for everything.”

The tax on methane, a highly potent greenhouse gas that warms at a rate 80 times greater than carbon dioxide, drew support from BP, Occidental and Shell. Writing about the methane fee in a Shell blog post, Chris Egby, a company official, said the law “presents an opportunity to industry and other companies, because it promotes extra investment in tools and solutions that will make it easier for them to meet their methane targets.”

Long-term benefits

The provisions designed to spur domestic oil production, like cutting royalties that companies pay to extract fossil fuels from federal land and accelerating the approval of federal permits for construction projects, are what Republicans predict will have the most impact on longer-term prices.

Among other changes, Republicans would narrow the scope of Section 401 within the Clean Water Act — a statute that requires projects that might release pollutants to get approval from an affected state or tribe — to specify that projects cannot be denied permits for reasons unrelated to a water quality issue.

Rep. David Rouzer, R-N.C., who wrote the provision, said the new language would apply to any project but that existing law has been “more predominantly weaponized” against oil and gas.

“Time is money, and the burden and the cost grows exponentially with additional time,” Rouzer said. “And that’s all transferred to customers that utilize fossil fuels for their vehicles, for heating their homes, et cetera.”

Republicans said another way their bill would lower costs is through several provisions designed to spur domestic mining capacity, which would help produce critical minerals needed to make batteries and chips that are used to make consumer products like cellphones, computers and even electric vehicles.

“These minerals are critical to basically every aspect of our economy,” Westerman said. “You start getting into the chemical business as well. And people think of oil and gas as fuel in your car. But there’s so many things that are made from petroleum other than just fuel. I was in an automotive tire plant in my district … and they bring in truckloads of chemicals every week that are derived from petroleum products.”

LNG conundrum

At least one provision of the bill may lead to higher electricity costs. The measure would lift restrictions on the export of LNG.

In the years after  the U.S. became a natural gas heavy-hitter on the world stage following the fracking boom of the mid-2000s, the country had ample gas stocks and generally low and stable natural gas. That changed as the country began building new export terminals to send LNG overseas.

As the war in Ukraine has raged, Europe has become the primary destination for U.S. exports of LNG, increasing 141 percent last year versus 2021, according to the EIA, while exports to Asia from the U.S. fell 46 percent during that time frame.

Mark Dyson, managing director of the carbon-free electricity program at RMI, an independent research nonprofit, said in an interview that gas prices have jumped around in recent years.

“The invasion of Ukraine has tightened global markets, and in particular, the United States’ response has been to ramp up export of natural gas through liquefied natural gas facilities in the United States, which has the effect of driving up prices domestically,” Dyson said. “With more LNG export facilities coming online over the next few years in the United States, that higher price point and that volatility are likely to persist.”

Harsh winter weather events — like the Texas winter storm of 2021, when much of the state lost power — has increased demand for and costs of natural gas, Dyson said.

“Those combined to drive up the price dramatically in a bunch of different events over the past few years,” he said.

Natural gas fuels about 40 percent of electricity nationwide, so as prices for gas have risen in recent years, those increases have appeared on consumers’ utility bills.

Regional constraints on gas transmission, pipeline failures and scarcity of gas have also increased prices in the U.S., said Dyson, singling out Western states in particular. And in California, costs to mitigate wildfire are folded into electricity bills, Dyson added.

The GOP effort to increase LNG exports could lead to further volatility and price increases.

But overall, Republicans think the package would lower costs, while pledging their work on the matter isn’t done.

The bill “is a first start in the energy push for this Congress to try to lower prices, make electricity and energy itself affordable, reliable and secure for this nation,” said Rep. Jeff Duncan, R-S.C., who sits on the Energy and Commerce Committee and chairs a subcommittee with jurisdiction over large portions of the bill.

Source: Rollcall.com

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The 118th Congress is working at a fever pitch to find ways to economically punish China.

With headline-grabbing titles like Fair Trade with China Enforcement Act, Ending China’s Developing Nation Status Act, and Neutralizing Unfair Chinese Export Subsidies Act of 2023, a flurry of bills in both the House and Senate seek to impose costs on China for its coercive economic and national security policies. Many of these bills are a step in the right direction. Others are simply political theatre. While bashing China is undoubtedly in vogue, the costs and benefits of these bills need serious scrutiny. Good intentions can backfire; these bills might hurt the US more than China.

Take, for example, the China Oil Export Prohibition Act of 2023. Penned by Senator Marco Rubio, the bill calls for banning US exports of oil products to China. It follows on the heels of the Protecting America’s Strategic Petroleum Reserve from China Act, which forbids the drawdown of US strategic oil reserves for sale to China. The latter will do little to hurt China, which accounts for just 7.5 of the 296 million barrels of Strategic Petroleum Reserve Washington put up for sale. In any case, that window has closed. Rubio’s bill, which one study says has a 20 percent chance of passing, lacks support from Democrats, yet could pick up steam in the wake of China’s balloon incident.

What’s important about Rubio’s bill is that it excludes natural gas and liquified natural gas (LNG). But this might change for several reasons, not all of which are about Beijing. For example, a ban on LNG exports to China could complement the Democrats’ push to move away natural gas.

Still, banning LNG exports to China would be a mistake. It would amount to the expropriation of US assets dedicated to fulfilling contracts with China, and force Beijing closer to Moscow.

In 2021, China imported more LNG than any other country. That year saw U.S. LNG exports to China reach an all-time-high of 400,000 million cubic feet. By 2022, this figure had plunged to 100,000 cubic feet, in part due to political uncertainty about the prospect of future sales. This puts American jobs on the line. It also positions Russia, as China’s third-largest supplier of natural gas, to pick up the slack.

In an essay titled “How Congress Can Protect Americans from Communist China’s Bid for Domination,” Rubio explains that “[f]irst and foremost, we need to prevent markets from enriching Beijing-controlled firms.” To this end, he’s sponsored no fewer than eight bills taking aim at China, covering everything from corporate corruption to “fair trade” and investment in companies on the US government’s blacklists. No one can excuse Rubio of “being soft” on China.

That said, Rubio’s China Oil Export Prohibition Act of 2023 would do far more harm than good for the United States if LNG were to be included in a subsequent draft, or in a related bill.

In his remarks on the twenty-year anniversary of China joining the World Trade Organization, Rubio said that U.S. approval “was rooted in a flawed assumption” that put “economic integration” over “our national security.” This view is also held by the Industrial Energy Consumers of America (IECA), which asked the Senate’s Select Committee on Intelligence to “examine the national and economic security implications of China’s actions to contract for significant volume of US LNG for periods of up to 20 years.” But this national security argument doesn’t hold water.

That’s because, as the IECA further notes, China is “also locking up large volumes of LNG from Russia, Australia and Qatar.” That’s the point: if the United States were to ban LNG exports to China, Russia would make up the difference, solidifying an alliance that is a growing threat to U.S. national security.

The implication of Rubio’s bill is that an export ban, like “our national security,” can’t be viewed in a vacuum. The global economy is replete with trade partners. A ban on U.S. LNG exports would only imperil good American jobs and investments, and deepen China’s alliance with Russia.

Source: Nationalinterest.org

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Tenable Holdings
Tenable Holdings






IBD Stock Analysis

Shares have formed a flat base with a buy point of 46.97
Ranks fifth out of 37 in Computer Software-Security group
Stock holds Composite Rating of 88 out of best-possible 99

Composite Rating


Industry Group Ranking


Emerging Pattern

Flat Base

Flat Base

One of three positive chart patterns to look for when doing technical analysis. It usually occurs after a stock has advanced off of a “cup with handle” or “double bottom” pattern. The “flat base” moves straight sideways in a fairly tight price range for at least five weeks and does not correct more than 15%.



* Not real-time data. All data shown was captured at
11:23AM EDT on

Tenable Holdings (TENB) is the IBD Stock Of The Day as demand increases for its cybersecurity risk exposure management products. TENB stock is nearing a buy point.

Shares of the Columbia, Md.-based company have formed a flat base with a buy point of 46.97, according to IBD MarketSmith charts.

On the stock market today, TENB stock advanced 1.9% to close at 45.55.

TENB stock has risen since the firm reported better-than-expected results for the fourth quarter on Feb. 7.

Tenable Sales, Earnings Top Estimates

Tenable’s adjusted earnings jumped 140% year over year to 12 cents a share in the quarter ended Dec. 31. Further, sales climbed 24% to $184.6 million. TENB stock analysts polled by FactSet had expected Tenable earnings of 7 cents a share on sales of $181.4 million.

“We are seeing incredible traction with Tenable One, which helps customers understand and reduce risk across the interconnected attack surface,” Chief Executive Amit Yoran said in a news release.

For the current quarter, Tenable forecast sales of $187 million, up 17%, based on the midpoint of its outlook. Also, it predicts adjusted earnings of 2 to 3 cents a share, vs. 6 cents in the year-earlier period.

About 43,000 organizations worldwide use Tenable products to understand and reduce cyber risk.

TENB Stock Gets Buy Rating

Wells Fargo analyst Andrew Nowinski reiterated his overweight, or buy, rating on TENB stock after meeting with company management earlier this month. Further, he has a price target of 58 on TENB stock.

In a note to clients, Nowinski said Tenable One will be key to the company’s outperformance in 2023.

Tenable One, introduced in October, has an opportunity to consolidate cybersecurity spending, Nowinski said. Meanwhile, it could “replace many point-product solutions,” he said.

“Tenable One takes the core vulnerability data, combines it with threat intelligence, which can then show the customer the likely path an attacker might attempt to exploit,” Nowinski said. “It enables customers to better understand where they are vulnerable and the threats that could impact their organization.”

TENB stock ranks fifth out of 37 stocks in IBD’s Computer Software-Security industry group, according to IBD Stock Checkup. Also, it has an IBD Composite Rating of 88 out of 99.

IBD’s Composite Rating is a blend of key fundamental and technical metrics to help investors gauge a stock’s strengths. The best growth stocks have a Composite Rating of 90 or better.

Follow Patrick Seitz on Twitter at @IBD_PSeitz for more stories on consumer technology, software and semiconductor stocks.


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The post Tenable, IBD Stock Of The Day, Rises As Cybersecurity Offering Gains Traction appeared first on Investor’s Business Daily.

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By Geoffrey Cann

This is hands-down the best way to transfer leading edge technology between unrelated sectors.

Tech Transfer

When I was growing up, there was a story making the rounds in the school yard that Tang, a sweet orange-flavored powdered beverage, was invented for the US moon landing program in the 1960s. It sounded plausible — a powder that turned into a beverage could only have been invented with space travel in mind. Of course, the story is incorrect. Tang was invented before the Apollo program but it was in fact popularized by one of the astronauts.

This was my first exposure to the idea that a technology (in this case, a product) developed for one sector could be transferred for use in another.

As it is, a number of technologies from various space programs have migrated their way from NASA and into commercial use.

Scratch-resistant lens for eye glasses originated in space helmet visors.
Hand-held battery operated tools like vacuums and drills started out as devices for collecting samples from the lunar surface.
Solar panels were invented to provide power while in space.
Water filters for the space program are now everywhere thanks to Brita.
Air purifiers, originally intended to cleanse the air in the International Space Station are now commonplace in aircraft and hospitals.

Transferring technology between sectors should be easy, but actually it’s very challenging. Even where cross sector pollination has clear potential, there are often quite hard and impenetrable lines between sectors.  For example, the unique terminology and abbreviations that are endemic to any sector hinder cross-sector communications. Different sectors have their own rhythms and pressures, and may not see the value in investigating what others have done to improve their fortunes. The features of a technology that make it well suited in one sector may not be valued in another, and some perceived critical feature may be absent. It’s not clear what technologies are even worth transferring. Timing might be everything.

Aside from NASA, there are relatively few high profile and successful examples of technology transfer, a fact I verified by asking my spouse who also struggled to name an example.

Of course, the vast majority of forums where experts convene are usually aimed at narrow specific sectors. That makes sense—it’s easy for conference organizers to specialize in a sector, and equally easy to advertise to that sector. The oil industry, where I spend most of my time, has ADIPEC, CERAWeek, and the Global Energy Show. Birds of a feather like to flock together.

But there are precious few forums where true decision makers from a range of sectors can convene for dialogue on the art of the possible, and to consummate real action with real deals.

One such forum, perhaps the only one, is ConvergX, a conference dedicated to the idea that there are meaningful and plentiful technology transfer opportunities between sectors. The sectors involved include energy, military, technology, agriculture, mining, construction, aerospace, defense and security, and finance. Success is measured by deals being inked between innovators in one sector and customers in another. To be in the room, you need to be able to make deals happen.

I attended the last in-person ConvergX conference in Calgary back in February 2020, just before the world broke. Here’s a summary. What I learned is that top-of-house decision makers across all industries are hugely interested in the macro shifts impacting whole of planet.

Cross-cutting technologies and solutions have intuitive appeal. Imagine you’re in a maritime defense unit and charged with monitoring the national maritime border. Your interests will likely overlap with those companies operating off shore oil platforms and mining companies prospecting on the ocean floor, who concern themselves with marine hazards such as tsunamis and ice bergs. The oil industry, for example, has developed technology to closely monitor weather events, which could be quite valuable to you, and of interest to mining businesses and aquaculture.

Similarly as a maritime defense service, you have developed specialist capabilities to detect small vessels carrying refugees, a capability that could be of interest to shippers concerned with pirates, and aquaculture businesses worried about their unsupervised facilities.

Surfacing the Issues

With a goal to get to solutions that can be manifest as cross sector deals, the forum must discuss the most pressing common issues of the day, and not just those of narrow sectors. This is what distinguishes ConvergX from the typical industry-driven event—the rich dialogue in a huge range of subjects.

Here’s a snapshot of the kinds of topics that ConvergX will cover.


In the past year, the defense profile for nations with exposure to the Arctic has changed dramatically. Only a few nations have lands in the arctic zone (including Russia, Canada, Norway, Greenland, Iceland, Finland, Sweden, Denmark and the United States), but many nations have interests (such as fishing and shipping). With Russia now in a hot war with Ukraine and increasingly isolated internationally, collaboration on arctic matters is at risk. Finland and Sweden have both applied to join NATO, and if admitted, all but one arctic nation (Russia) will be part of NATO.

Russia’s unpredictability is now casting an uncomfortable eye on the defensive posture of NATO in the Arctic. Early warning and detection systems may need to be strengthened.

Beyond defense questions, general arctic development occupies a place of prominence. The Arctic is rich in resources, but is environmentally sensitive, under critical threat from climate change, and home to unique societies that have survived its harsh climate for eons.


Since energy is a critical national resource for every nation, ConvergX will discuss a number of key issues that are of cross-industry interest. These include:

Energy security and reliability, formerly confined as a topic to the non-OECD nations, but in light of Russia’s actions in Ukraine, now a topic globally.
Energy transition to new energy products and services, such as hydrogen.
The decarbonization of legacy energy consumers, and the concurrent rise in clean energy.
The expansion of power infrastructure (generation, transmission, distribution) to cope with a doubling of energy consumed.
The adoption of clean tech throughout industry, especially in the energy sector itself.


More and more industrial activity is aimed at closing the loop between industry and impacts on common resources. The conference will review latest developments in such areas as carbon reduction, emissions reductions, waste and recycling, and materials science. I’m keen to hear specifically about plastics recovery and recycling.


The common tool that links together the subsurface (underground and under water), surface, and space is telecommunications. Very soon, the planet will be enmeshed with high-speed, high capacity connectivity through low earth orbit satellites. The impacts of ubiquitous reliable connectivity are still being discovered, the most recent example the arrival of Starlink terminals in Ukraine, which have given Ukraine an advantage over the invaders.

Advanced telecommunications services and infrastructure will be strongly featured.


Food security is no longer something isolated to a handful of emerging economies. Climate change has brought drought to societies unaccustomed to water scarcity. European rivers have completely dried up, and many ski hills didn’t open this year because of a lack of snow. Famine is back in North Korea and parts of Africa. But innovations in agri-tech continue to allow farmers to outpace the demand for farm produce, and generational change in farming is opening up opportunities for farms to digitalize and modernize. Aquaculture is supplanting high seas fishing.


Rapid advances in technology tend to overshadow some of its risks and impacts. Cyber threats such as denial of service attacks, ransomware, and theft of resources are common to every enterprise. Talent models are having to react quickly to innovations like generative AI, remote working, robotics and industrial automation.


The topics I’ve outlined already hint at the kinds of critical infrastructure that cross sectors. These include telecommunications, water and waste water, energy, and the construction and maintenance of related installations, and in particular, installations in sensitive areas such as the Arctic.


The recent round of bank failures has put global finance under a spotlight, but high interest rates are having the desired effect. Capital expenditure plans are starting to pull back. Looking beyond the at risk banking sector, the conference will talk through the current state of venture capital, the on-going development of non-sovereign currencies and NFTs, and fintech. There is still a huge amount of dry powder (funds yet to be allocated to ventures) awaiting the right opportunity.

More Information

If you’re a decision maker, and you can make commitments, you should come. There’s no forum like this.

For more information about ConvergX and its upcoming event, here’s a link for your use.

The next ConvergX event takes place in Calgary April 17 to 19, 2023, and I’ve been invited to chair the conference. I can’t wait.

Check out my latest book, ‘Carbon, Capital, and the Cloud: A Playbook for Digital Oil and Gas’, available on Amazon and other on-line bookshops.

You might also like my first book, Bits, Bytes, and Barrels: The Digital Transformation of Oil and Gas’, also available on Amazon.

Take Digital Oil and Gas, the one-day on-line digital oil and gas awareness course on Udemy.

Take the one-hour Digital for the Front Line Worker in Oil and Gas, on Udemy.

Biz card:  Geoffrey Cann on OVOUMobile:  +1(587)830-6900email:  [email protected]website:  geoffreycann.comLinkedIn:  www.linkedin.com/in/training-digital-oil-gas

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William Shatner, Monica Lewinsky and other prolific Twitter commentators — some household names, others little-known journalists — could soon be losing the blue check marks that helped verify their identity on the social media platform.

They could get the marks back by paying up to $11 a month. But some longtime users, including 92-year-old Star Trek legend Shatner, have baulked at buying the premium service championed by Twitter’s billionaire owner and chief executive Elon Musk.

After months of delay, Musk is gleefully promising that Saturday is the deadline for celebrities, journalists and others who had been verified for free to pony up or lose their legacy status.

“It will be glorious,” he tweeted on Monday, in response to a Twitter user who noted that Saturday is also April Fools’ Day.

After buying Twitter for $44bn in October, Musk has been trying to boost the struggling platform’s revenue by pushing more people to pay for a premium subscription. But his move also reflects his assertion that the blue verification marks have become an undeserved or “corrupt” status symbol for elite personalities and news reporters.

Along with verifying celebrities, one of Twitter’s main reasons to mark profiles with a free blue check mark starting about 14 years ago was to verify politicians, activists and people who suddenly find themselves in the news, as well as little-known journalists at small publications around the globe, as an extra tool to curb misinformation coming from accounts that are impersonating people.

Lewinsky tweeted a screenshot on Sunday of all the people impersonating her, including at least one who appears to have paid for a blue check mark. She asked, “what universe is this fair to people who can suffer consequences for being impersonated? a lie travels half way around the world before truth even gets out the door.”

Shatner, known for his irreverent humour, also tagged Musk with a complaint about the promised changes.

“I’ve been here for 15 years giving my (clock emoji) & witty thoughts all for bupkis,” he wrote. “Now you’re telling me that I have to pay for something you gave me for free?”

Musk responded that there should not be a different standard for celebrities. “It’s more about treating everyone equally,” Musk tweeted.

For now, those who still have the blue check but apparently haven’t paid the premium fee — a group that includes Beyonc?, Stephen King, Barack and Michelle Obama, Taylor Swift, Tucker Carlson, Drake and Musk himself — have messages appended to their profile saying it is a “legacy verified account. It may or may not be notable.”

But while “the attention is reasonably on celebrities because of our culture,” the bigger concern for open government advocate Alex Howard, director of the Digital Democracy Project, is that impersonators could more easily spread rumours and conspiracies that could move markets or harm democracies around the world.

“The reason verification exists on this platform was not simply to designate people as notable or authorities, but to prevent impersonation,” Howard said.

One of Musk’s first product moves after taking over Twitter was to launch a service granting blue checks to anyone willing to pay $8 monthly. But it was quickly inundated by impostor accounts, including those impersonating Nintendo, pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly and Musk’s businesses Tesla and SpaceX, so Twitter had to temporarily suspend the service days after its launch.

The relaunched service costs $8 a month for web users and $11 a month for iPhone and iPad users. Subscribers are supposed to see fewer ads, be able to post longer videos and have their tweets featured more prominently.

 After months of delay, Elon Musk is promising that Saturday is deadline for people to pay or lose their legacy status.

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It is the whiz-kid of the artificial intelligence (AI) world that others are trying to emulate.

In the four months since its November 30 launch, ChatGPT has shown the ability to perform a wide range of tasks, from cracking the bar and medical licensing exams in the United States to writing emails and songs, building apps, and more.

The fact that it is freely available for public use has opened up a plethora of opportunities previously thought beyond the realm of possibility of AI — even though the app’s makers have faced criticism for opacity around the programming they have used to train it.

Developed by OpenAI, a company backed by Microsoft, ChatGPT became the fastest-growing consumer app in the world two months after its launch, with more than 100 million users by January.

That early success has prompted Microsoft to integrate its Bing search engine and Edge browser with the technology running ChatGPT in the hope of improving the experience of users. Last week, Google launched a similar AI app, known as Bard, after unveiling a preview of the platform in February.

Also in mid-March, China’s tech giant Baidu announced its answer to the US app — a platform called Ernie. Both Bard and Ernie have suffered from early stumbles as the AI arms race heats up.

Meanwhile, OpenAI has launched GPT-4, an upgraded version of the technology behind ChatGPT. The new platform can analyse images and more extensive texts of up to 25,000 words, create a website from a hand-drawn sketch and recreate games within seconds.

Companies are now rushing to launch products built entirely on ChatGPT in sectors ranging from customer service to financial analytics.

At a time when the International Labour Organization already estimates that 208 million people will be unemployed in 2023, will this new wave of AI dramatically increase joblessness? Which jobs would these tools potentially replace? What is the future of work?

The short answer: ChatGPT and its rival AI models could dramatically disrupt the labour market, including replacing routine jobs in some sectors. But overall, the technology could enhance productivity and complement human workers, instead of leading to unemployment, experts told Al Jazeera.

Teacher Donnie Piercey, using ChatGPT in an exercise in class at Stonewall Elementary in Lexington, Kentucky, US, on Monday, February 6, 2023 [Timothy D Easley/AP Photo]

Hey, teacher, (don’t) leave that app alone

What makes ChatGPT and other similar platforms fundamentally different from previous generations of AI is the GPT — which stands for generative pre-trained transformer — bit.

Simply put, these tools use a technique known as deep learning to produce and analyse text, answer questions and perform other language and speech-related tasks in ways that can mimic human beings better than ever before.

“The impact of the generative-AI on the labour market will be really substantial,” Laura Nurski, fellow and lead of the Future of Work team at Brussels-based think tank Bruegel, told Al Jazeera. “It is being widely used as an improved search engine for gathering information, for rough drafting of texts, and for producing text in a specific writing style. This is really applicable to a lot of jobs, and in pretty much every sector.”

Yet the very nature of these AI platforms and their focus on tasks related to language interpretation means that some professions will be affected more than others, Nurski said.

A new study by researchers at Princeton, the University of Pennsylvania and New York University has found that telemarketers and teachers could be most affected.

The researchers used a benchmark known as the AI Occupational Exposure to evaluate how much services like ChatGPT could disrupt different professions. They concluded that even within the education sector, post-secondary teachers of languages and literature, history, law, philosophy, religion, sociology, political science and psychology would be most affected.

Yet that disruption does not necessarily mean that AI will take away millions of teaching jobs, the researchers behind that study and other analysts point out. These new tools could instead help teachers in some of their tasks — from assisting them in catching cheating and plagiarism to aiding them in developing teaching materials. “It will certainly automate some tasks but it doesn’t mean that the AI can do all your jobs,” Nurski said.

Meanwhile, AI’s limitations might keep a check on its ability to meaningfully replace humans. ChatGPT has been producing errors alongside its successes — a fact acknowledged by its creators who feel the technology is still “flawed and limited”. For instance, it has failed at basic math calculations and logic.

To be sure, some jobs could become redundant.

“Studies that have looked at the displacement effect have found that routine jobs, such as language translators or phone operators, will be easier to be displaced by the AI,” Georgios Petropoulos, a researcher at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Stanford University who studies the implications of new technologies on labour markets, told Al Jazeera.

But AI also has the “potential to create jobs,” Nurski said. Indeed, the World Economic Forum concluded in October 2020 that while AI would likely take away 85 million jobs globally by 2025, it would also generate 97 million new jobs in fields ranging from big data and machine learning to information security and digital marketing.

“What can be said with certainty is that it will change the way we work,” Nurski said.

Workers complete an electric car body on the assembly line of the Volkswagen plant in Zwickau, Germany, on February 25, 2020. The arrival of automobiles once threatened jobs related to horses — but eventually ended up creating more jobs. AI could do the same, according to experts [Jens Meyer/AP]

Making work more efficient

That change will show, in part, in improved productivity, according to economists and tech analysts. There is already early evidence of this.

A new study, which has not yet been peer-reviewed, conducted by two researchers at the MIT showed that ChatGPT substantially increased productivity for college-educated professionals performing mid-level professional writing tasks.

The researchers asked 444 writers, consultants and human resource professionals to write press releases, short reports, analysis plans, and delicate emails. Half of them used ChatGPT. The study found that low-skilled workers in particular benefitted from the tool, which helped reduce the time they took — and shrunk the difference in quality between their work and more skilled workers.

That is no surprise to Petropoulos. His work has shown that in past industrial revolutions too, the displacement of jobs might have dominated in the short run, but in the long term, when the markets adapt to the automation shock, increased productivity actually sets the stage for more employment opportunities.

For instance, the arrival of automobiles reduced the importance of those whose employment depended on horses. But within a few years, the automobile industry’s success meant a demand for more and more cars — and the new jobs that came as a result.

In addition to education, the study that examined the jobs likely to be most affected by tools like ChatGPT identified legal services and securities, commodities, and investments as sectors that could be disrupted. Morgan Stanley, one of the world’s biggest investment management firms, is already developing its own ChatGPT-based AI tool.

Yet as with teachers, that effect on productivity could also simply mean that AI takes over some of the more mundane tasks in affected professions rather than replacing a workforce wholesale, experts said.

AI, they said, will not be able to replace non-routine and essential jobs, such as a lawyer who has to argue in a court, or the sensitive role of a pharmacist who has to sell prescribed drugs.

“Although you could use the assistance of a tool like ChatGPT to draft legal notes, a lawyer will still have to go to the court to defend their client,” Petropoulos said.

Ultimately, the economy — and individual companies — will need a balance, integrating human and AI labour, he said.

As he pointed out, even Tesla and SpaceX founder Elon Musk, not known to concede errors easily, “admitted some years ago that the excessive automation of Tesla was a mistake and how human labour needs to complement technology”.

And there are professions where AI might struggle to have any meaningful effect at all.

A workshop on ChatGPT bot organised for teachers by the School Media Service of the Public education of the Swiss canton of Geneva, on February 1, 2023 [Fabrice COFFRINI/AFP]

No silver bullet

The study that examined industries most likely to be affected by ChatGPT determined that jobs requiring physical labour, such as textile workers, brick masons and carpenters, will largely remain unaffected.

Most experts believe high-skilled roles are also unlikely to see as much disruption as middle-skill jobs — where expertise can at least somewhat be emulated by AI.

“Machine learning has not yet reached a level where it will necessarily replace the top-skilled jobs,” Guy Michaels, associate professor of economics at the London School of Economics, told Al Jazeera. “We are witnessing replacements for workers in the middle rung of the skill distribution.”

Nurski of Brugels said workers whose industries are affected might also be able to upgrade their skills, including by understanding and adapting to using tools such as ChatGPT.

Yet for all of its promise — and threat of disruption — AI’s ultimate success or failure might be determined not by technology but, ironically, by people.

At the end of the day, the impact of language model tools like ChatGPT will depend upon how consumers respond to services delivered by these platforms instead of humans, Michaels said. “Consumers may not find true value in machine-generated contents,” he said.

In 2020, a team of researchers in the US and China surveyed 670 online shoppers about their experience with AI customer service. Most said that they liked the fact that AI could respond to their questions more quickly, round-the-clock and more objectively. But a majority also felt humans were more likely to give them more accurate and comprehensive information.

Another study, also in 2020, sampled hotel customers in Australia. It concluded that the customers preferred dealing with human beings.

In other words, while AI-fuelled change is upon us, what that might look like is unclear.

“We have seen other technological breakthroughs in the past ranging from the invention of the engine to the introduction of computers at workplaces. We are still working, it’s just that the nature of our job has changed,” Nurski said. “Even though technology can be disruptive, we are not looking at the end of work.”

“This is not the first technological change nor will it be the last.”

The latest AI wave will disrupt the workplace. Teachers could be most affected. But it could end up creating more jobs.

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The invasion of Ukraine has exposed the “double standards” of human rights internationally, a new Amnesty International report has said, with the West adopting a tough response to Russia’s war of aggression while also maintaining a “deafening silence” on rights abuses around the world.

The UK-based rights organisation published its annual 2022 report on Tuesday, highlighting the state of human rights in 156 countries.

“In 2022, we had the fantastic example of how the world came to support and show solidarity with the Ukrainian people. But we did not have a similar kind of support and solidarity for the Palestinian people, the people of Ethiopia, Myanmar, and the Democratic Republic of Congo,” Agnes Callamard, Amnesty’s secretary-general, told Al Jazeera from Paris on Monday.

The international response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine was “robust and welcomed”, characterised by public denunciations and marked by “strong calls against the many war crimes being committed”, Callamard said.

A view of destroyed buildings in Vuhledar, Ukraine [Head of Donetsk Civil-Military Administration Pavlo Kyrylenko/Handout via Reuters]

“It was also marked by commitment and actual actions to support international investigation into those war crimes. The International Criminal Court did intervene very quickly and frankly, very unusually,” she added.

In March 2022, International Criminal Court (ICC) Prosecutor Karim Khan said he was opening an investigation into alleged war crimes in Ukraine, dating as far back as the 2013 Maidan protests. At that time, demonstrations erupted in central Kyiv against the country’s then-Russia-friendly government and persisted until the fall of then-President Viktor Yanukovych’s administration in early 2014.

Earlier this month, the ICC issued an arrest warrant for President Vladimir Putin for allegedly committing war crimes in Ukraine.

Callamard said because the reaction to Ukraine had been so “multifaceted”, covering many dimensions including the issue of Ukrainian refugees, it made the “silence, the indifference and the neglect very glaring” when compared with other instances of human rights violations.

Israeli occupation, refugees

The Amnesty secretary-general said that while the report had many examples of double standards regarding human rights, the occupation of the Palestinians was a “particularly important one”.

“Without making any comparison between Russia’s aggression and Israel … it is clear the Palestinian people are under a regime of oppression. A regime of occupation and a regime of apartheid,” Callamard told Al Jazeera.

“At a time when the international community did so much … for the people of Ukraine, the people of Palestine lived through the most deadly year in decades,” Callamard noted.

More than 150 Palestinians were killed in the occupied West Bank and occupied East Jerusalem last year, including 36 children. In May, Al Jazeera reporter Shireen Abu Akleh was killed by an Israeli soldier while covering a raid in Jenin, leading to worldwide condemnation.

Palestinian mourners carry pictures of slain Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh with words in Arabic that read: ‘Shireen, the voice of Palestine’ [File: Nasser Nasser/AP Photo]

The Amnesty report also condemned Europe’s approach and attitude to Ukrainian refugees compared with refugees from other nations.

“Generous reception of most people from Ukraine stood in sharp contrast to the often violent rejection and abuse of refugees and migrants at Europe’s external borders,” Amnesty said in the report.

“This double standard revealed the racism inherent in European Union’s external border policy and practice,” it said.

Asylum seekers queue for food distribution along the roadside on the Greek island of Lesbos [File: Louisa Gouliamaki/AFP]

In the United States, the report notes that 25,000 Haitians were expelled between September 2021 and May 2022 without due process, a move that runs counter to international law.

Among other crises highlighted in the report, Amnesty said the more than two-year-long civil war in Tigray, Ethiopia, was one of the “deadliest in recent memory”. According to some estimates, hundreds of thousands of people involved in the conflict were killed last year alone, and countries such as Mali, Venezuela and Yemen were also plagued by armed fighting or systemic violence “associated with human rights violations”.

Ukraine a ‘blueprint’ for human rights

Ukraine should provide a “blueprint” internationally for what needs to be done to protect a population from serious rights abuses, Callamard told Al Jazeera.

“What can be done for Ukrainian refugees, surely can be done for Syrian refugees,” she said.

“What are the reasons for the international community not to multiply what they have done for the Ukrainian people and do that for other people? The only response to that question will be self-interest,” she added.

Asked if she was optimistic about the state of human rights in 2023, Callamard said: “Sadly, while we do have a good model with Ukraine … we don’t have a great deal of trust that countries can act in ways that focus on the global and universal good and … rules that apply for everybody everywhere.”

 Amnesty International publishes annual report highlighting the state of human rights in more than 150 countries.

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West Jerusalem – As Israelis wake up after a tumultuous night of protests and an evening speech by the prime minister, many of them are adamant that the protests will continue until they achieve their demands.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced on Monday night a pause on his controversial judicial reforms to “allow dialogue” and avoid a “civil war” – succumbing to growing pressure from within his own coalition a day after one of the biggest protests in Israel’s history.

The proposed changes would see the Supreme Court’s ability to rule laws unconstitutional taken away from it and would give the government a greater say in the selection of judges, proposals that angered many in Israel.

People had been protesting against the proposed “reforms” for months, but after news of Netanyahu firing Defence Minister Yoav Gallant one day after the latter called for a halt to the process, tens of thousands gathered in the streets in a show of spontaneous anger.

Painting the protesters as extremists, Netanyahu portrayed his capitulation to the opposition in terms of the biblical character King Solomon, famous for his wisdom and tolerance.

Business as usual in the Supreme Court, as protests against proposed judicial ‘reforms’ continued outside [Eliyahu Freedman/Al Jazeera]

“I am not ready to tear the country apart” announced Netanyahu, referring to the growing rift between leading members of the military and his own government. “It is forbidden that there will be a civil war”.

Steps away from the Prime Minister’s Office where Netanyahu spoke, business had gone on as usual earlier at the fortified Supreme Court of Israel, while Israeli civil society froze for the day.

With the large Histadrut labour federation announcing a “historic strike”, departing flights at Ben Gurion Airport were halted, alongside universities, malls and many other institutions across the country for the day.

Early on Tuesday morning, Israeli President Isaac Herzog called on the government and the opposition to begin “an immediate negotiation process” to find a compromise over the proposed judicial “reform”.

Netanyahu’s plan was temporarily foiled due to growing dissent amongst members of his own party and increased resistance from Israeli’s military reserves refusing to serve.

While dissent has been quietly growing within Netanayahu’s ranks for weeks, Defence Minister Yoav Gallant was the first to formally break rank Saturday night, earning himself an early termination Sunday night. Gallant’s firing proved to be the last straw, while Netanyahu swore on the correctness of his path and his intent to continue to push for judicial “reform”.

Israeli society, which views its mandatory civilian army as essential to protecting the country from imminent disaster, proved to be extremely sensitive to the firing of a defence minister – especially under the current conditions and with the perception of Netanyahu’s self-serving political motive.

“Netanyahu has traditionally been viewed as a backer of the Supreme Court, who spoke about the importance of an independent judiciary as recently as three years ago,” explains Eli Kowaz, policy adviser at the Israel Policy Forum. Many are viewing his motivation as fundamentally “to escape his legal conundrum and three indictments.”

The firing of Gallant, which led to spontaneous protests around the country late into the night on Monday marked the point of no return for the embattled prime minister and his fragile coalition of right-wing and ultra-Orthodox parties. People perceived it as Netanyahu willingly jeopardising the country’s military readiness for his own political ends.

Minister of Defence Yoav Gallant speaks at Ben Gurion Airport on March 9, 2023 [Maya Alleruzzo/AP Photo]

Gallant had spoken out after growing unrest within the military’s ranks – particularly the country’s reserve forces – saying it had exposed potential weaknesses that could be exploited by the country’s foes. Refusal to serve in the Israeli army reserves is viewed as “taboo and shocking” for Israelis, per Tal Sagi of Breaking the Silence, a group of ex-Israeli army soldiers and members of the anti-Occupation bloc.

“In Israeli society, serving in the army is your application to belonging and more. It is something that you want to do to give back to your society and take care of your family and community.”

Sagi explains how the anti-occupation bloc has felt growing acceptance from other anti-judicial reform protesters as the protests progressed over the past months, particularly since the pogrom in Huwara.

“At first, in the anti-Occupation bloc, there were a lot of attacks on people who held Palestinian flags. Now I see less and less violence. It’s like the protest became more comfortable with the fact of the flag’s presence.”

While the protests on Sunday night and throughout Monday were fundamentally about the safety of Israelis and their judicial rights under attack by a strongman leader, the anti-occupation bloc has taken advantage of the opportunity to educate the thousands of Israelis outraged at Netanyahu and his coalition.

The firing of Gallant led to protests around the country late into Monday [Azucena Mezona/Al Jazeera]

Anti-occupation protester Jacob Abolafia explained that “over the course of three months, and especially after the pogrom in Huwara, the consciousness is growing that what is going on in the occupation, the occupied territories and the Israeli streets are tied.

“You would hear at least 10,000 people chant: ‘Where were you at Hawara?’”

After hearing his speech, Kowaz predicted that Netanyahu would yield to his right-wing coalition partners and said the protest movement would continue until the proposed changes were completely quashed.

“Netanyahu gave the Ben Gvir faction a gift,” he said, referring to the creation of an ambiguous “national civil force” under the hardline lawmaker’s stewardship to convince him not to quit the coalition. “I think the protests will continue, maybe not at the same amount, but more on a weekly basis.”

Overnight, far-right protesters who were out on the streets in support of Netanyahu and the judicial “reforms” faced off against the anti-judicial changes protesters, threatening them and causing clashes in some places.

PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s statement Monday hasn’t appeased those opposing his perceived desire to control the judiciary.

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Peruvian authorities say they have seized 2.3 tonnes of cocaine disguised as ceramic tiles destined for Turkey via a growing maritime route for illicit drugs.

The drug bust took place on Friday at a warehouse at Peru’s biggest port, El Callao, just outside the capital Lima, police said in a statement on Monday.

“This is the first incident that we know of [in which the cargo was in] Peruvian ports and its final destination was Turkey. Usually, we are aware of ports in Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain and France,” said El Callao’s police chief, Colonel Luis Angel Bolanos.

At a press conference on Monday, police displayed the cocaine, which had been fixed to rubber sheets to appear as hundreds of ceramic tiles packed in wooden boxes inside a shipping container.

Bolanos said the seized cocaine was valued at “at least $20m”.

The Andean nation seized a record 86.4 tonnes of drugs and illicit substances last year, 28 tonnes of which were cocaine hydrochloride, police data shows.

Peru and nearby Colombia are among the top global producers of cocaine and of the coca leaf it is made of, according to the United Nations.

Production in Peru has been mostly growing along the border with Brazil in the Ucayali region, where coca leaf crops have almost sextupled in size in two years to 10,229 hectares (25,276 acres) in 2021, according to Peruvian authorities.

Police say the drug bust happened at a warehouse at Peru’s biggest port El Callao.

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Only a few years ago, a rapprochement between Egypt and Turkey would have been unimaginable, as the countries faced off on multiple fronts, and their leaders attacked each other in speeches.

And yet, fast forward to today, and the regional rivals have begun holding talks at the ministerial level, sending each other warm messages and talking about re-establishing full diplomatic relations.

Earlier this month, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu visited Cairo to hold talks with his Egyptian counterpart Sameh Shoukry for the first time since bilateral relations were severed about a decade ago.

Shoukry said at a joint press conference that ties will be restored to the ambassadorial level at “an appropriate time” and that the presidents of the two countries have the “political will” to normalise bilateral relations.

Cavusoglu confirmed that the two sides “agreed to maximise our diplomatic relations” and “have evaluated what steps we will take next”.

The top Turkish diplomat’s trip to Egypt comes after Shoukry’s landmark visit to Turkey in February following the massive twin earthquakes that killed more than 40,000 people there.

Clear divisions

Diplomatic ties between Cairo and Ankara were severed in 2013 after Egypt’s current President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi led the overthrow of then-President Mohamed Morsi, a former leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, the oldest political Islamist group in the Arab world.

Morsi was the first democratically elected president of Egypt and had the backing of Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his conservative Justice and Development Party (AKP).

Erdogan condemned the coup at the time as “damaging, inhuman and against the people, national will and democracy”.

Since then, Turkey has provided refuge for Egyptian dissidents – many of whom are Muslim Brotherhood leaders who Cairo considers “terrorists” – and allowed them to run satellite television channels that spoke openly against the Egyptian president.

Following the coup, regional powers Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, who considered the Muslim Brotherhood a danger to their monarchies, backed el-Sisi and slammed Turkey for backing the Muslim Brotherhood.

Ankara’s support for its regional ally Qatar after Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt cut diplomatic and trade ties with Doha in June 2017 made regional divisions even clearer.

At the time, the four Arab allies, backed by a few other countries, imposed a sea, land and air blockade on Qatar, claiming it supported “terrorism” and was too close to Iran.

The more than three-year Gulf crisis was resolved in January 2021 after the blockading nations signed agreements with Qatar as they lifted the blockade and normalised relations.

Catalysing rapprochement

According to Turkish foreign policy analyst Semih Idiz, the fact that Doha fixed its relations with its Gulf neighbours and Egypt was a catalyst for Ankara to follow a similar path.

“Turkey would be isolated if it did not change its regional policy, so, I believe, the government started fixing its relations with rival powers in the region with the help of Qatar,” he told Al Jazeera.

In March 2021, reports began to surface that the Turkish government was restricting the activities of Muslim Brotherhood-aligned media outlets and warning them to change their editorial policies and not to target Egypt and el-Sisi.

According to Sinan Ulgen, a senior fellow at Brussels-based think tank Carnegie Europe, Turkey’s policy change towards the Muslim Brotherhood was the main factor in easing tensions between the two countries.

“After the removal of … Morsi from power, Turkey used a harsh non-diplomatic rhetoric against the new government in Egypt, which led to high tensions between the two countries,” Ulgen, who is also a former Turkish diplomat, told Al Jazeera.

“Ankara also got highly involved with Egypt’s internal politics and openly backed the Muslim Brotherhood in the 2010s, which is not the case today. Turkey even limited the activities of the group’s members within its borders, which was received positively in Cairo,” he said.

Turkish President Erdogan, right, shakes hands with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi as they are welcomed by Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, second right, on the opening ceremony of the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Doha [Handout/Press Office of the Presidency of Turkey/AFP]

He added that Turkey seems to not be as fixed on previous conditions it had over the 2013 coup, such as the release of political prisoners in Egypt.

In the months after the resolution of the Gulf crisis, delegations from Ankara and Cairo met multiple times for exploratory talks.

Turkish Treasury and Finance Minister Nureddin Nebati attended the annual meeting of the Islamic Development Bank in Cairo in June 2022, the first ministerial visit to Egypt in about nine years.

This was followed by Erdogan and el-Sisi, accompanied by Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, shaking hands on the sidelines of the World Cup in Qatar in November 2022, a first between the two leaders.

The rapprochement has been slow for Cairo and Ankara, Idiz told Al Jazeera, and that: “Egypt seems to be waiting for the result of the elections for the next move.”

Cavusoglu had said in Cairo that a meeting between the presidents was planned after the presidential and parliamentary polls in Turkey in May.

Lingering issues

Although the two sides send warm messages and show the political will to fix ties, there are fundamental disagreements to be addressed before they can cooperate, including the conflict in Libya and disagreements over the exclusive economic zone and hydrocarbon resources in the Mediterranean.

Ankara intervened in Libya after signing a military cooperation deal in November 2019 – along with a maritime demarcation agreement to establish an exclusive economic zone – with the Tripoli-based United Nations-recognised Government of National Accord (GNA), one of the two rival governments that emerged in the war-torn country.

Egypt, together with the UAE and Russia, backed the rival Libyan National Army (LNA) led by renegade military commander Khalifa Haftar and rejected Turkish military intervention on the side of the GNA.

Cyprus, Egypt, France and Greece – which was involved in a long-running dispute with Turkey over exclusive economic zones – said the GNA had no authority to enter such deals.

Furthermore, Egypt and Greece, who rejected the 2019 Turkey-GNA maritime deal, signed a separate agreement to determine their maritime boundaries in the summer of 2020, a deal rebuffed by Ankara.

Turkey and the GNA signed another agreement on exploration rights in October 2022, referencing their 2019 pact.

Egypt has an exclusive economic zone agreement with the Republic of Cyprus, while Ankara signed a similar agreement with the self-declared Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, a pseudo-state only recognised by Turkey.

Ulgen, the former Turkish diplomat, said the disagreement between the two sides over the Libyan conflict is not as strong as it used to be.

“This is predominantly because Ankara has been talking to different actors in the country as opposed to a few years back when it limited itself to the GNA. It is easier for the sides to come to a common understanding in the Libya issue now,” he told Al Jazeera.

“On the other hand, the Eastern Mediterranean dispute does not have any sign of being resolved. Thus, the two countries are likely to accept this fact to move on with their normalisation process.”

Regional rivals have held two talks at the foreign minister level in less than a month.

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