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Tuesday May 21, 2024

'Iran, Pakistan explore ways to materialise gas pipeline project'

Iranian diplomat hails Islamabad's “political determination” in concluding work on project

By Web Desk
May 06, 2024
Workers can be seen busy working on a gas pipeline at Chah Bahar, Iran. — AFP/File
Workers can be seen busy working on a gas pipeline at Chah Bahar, Iran. — AFP/File

Pakistan and Iran are trying to find a way forward for the completion of the bilateral gas pipeline project spanning on 1,900 kilometres in Chah Bahar area, Iran's Consul General to Pakistan Hassan Nourian said on Monday.

The diplomat hailed Islamabad’s “political determination” in concluding the work in Pakistan’s territory, which has been laid off since 2014. It may be noted that Iran has already completed the laying of a 900-kilometre pipeline.

The two countries signed the agreement to construct the pipeline from Iran's South Fars gas field to Pakistan's Balochistan and Sindh provinces in 2010, but it couldn’t materialise due to fears of sanctions by the United States.

"We see political determination from Pakistan to complete the project," Reuters quoted Nourian as saying during a “Meet the Press” session at the Karachi Press Club.

He said that the Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline "project holds great importance".

However, the Iranian diplomat said that the project’s completion was deferred due to international pressure.

Nourian further said that the recent visit of Iranian President Ibrahim Raisi to Pakistan was a significant step in bilateral relations between the two countries.

On the visit, he said, the two sides had discussed expediting bilateral trade through Gwadar and Chah Bahar ports, prisoner exchange and other economic and political affairs.

Both the countries agreed to control terrorism and security cooperation as well, he added.

Earlier, Defence Minister Khawaja Asif had expressed confidence in completion of the Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline project, saying that the obstacles in its way will be removed.

“Pakistan is in a position to complete [gas] pipeline project with Iran, and makes decision regarding it.

“We are constructing gas pipeline on our side from Gwadar to the Iranian border,” Asif said while speaking on Geo News' Capital Talk programme ahead of Raisi's visit last month.