CAIRO: Egypt aims to boost its oil and gas output by more than 40 percent in the next five years, the country s oil minister said on Wednesday. In the oil and gas sector, we are planning to increase our production to 100 million tons (a year) in the next five years, compared to this year s 71 million tons, the minister, Sameh Fahmy, told Reuters. He did not give separate figures for oil and gas output. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, Egypt produced 579,000 barrels per day of crude oil in 2005, and 3.6 billion cubic feet per day of natural gas in 2004. Earlier this year, the petroleum ministry said it was planning to attract $20 billion in foreign investment for the country s oil and gas sectors by 2011, including 20 new petrochemical plants. Egypt s plan also includes three liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects. Egypt is the sixth largest producer of LNG. Fahmy said the Egyptian government would not increase the price of gasoline and diesel fuel again this year. In an unpopular move in July, the government, which has been looking to reduce state energy subsidies, raised prices of gasoline and diesel by 30 percent. This year s budget includes $7 billion, about one fifth of all spending, for energy subsidies. Fahmy said that the ministry is still discussing ways to privatize the 100,000 bpd Middle East Oil Refinery (MIDOR). The privatization has been delayed because of Egypt s stock price declines in recent months. One of the options we have is to sell to Egyptians and the other is to sell to a strategic investor. But we are still discussing this issue, Fahmy added.