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March 13, 2019

TAPI gas pipeline project: Pakistan, Turkmenistan sign Host Government Agreement

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March 13, 2019

ISLAMABAD: The Turkmenistan government plans to build transport and energy corridor between Pakistan and Turkmenistan and wants to lay an optic fiber network parallel to Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline and then to China.

Foreign Minister of Turkmenistan Rashid Meredov said this while witnessing the signing ceremony of the finalised version of the Host Government Agreement (HGA) on TAPI gas pipeline network here on Tuesday.

The Turkmen minister discussed with the Pakistani delegation his government’s plan to make transport and energy corridor between Pakistan and Turkmenistan via Afghanistan and to lay an optic fiber network parallel to the route of the pipeline and see its possible extension till China.

The HGA agreement of TAPI was signed by the Federal Secretary Petroleum Mian Asad Hayauddin from the Pakistani side and CEO of TAPI Pipeline Company Limited (TPCL) Muhammetmyrat Amanov.

It is worth mentioning that earlier Pakistan and Turkmenistan also decided in a meeting with the Minister for Power Omar Ayub Khan to establish a joint working group to discuss and finalise negotiations on electricity transmission line from Turkmenistan to Pakistan via Afghanistan.

TAPI gas pipeline project aims to bring natural gas from the Gylkynish and adjacent gas fields in Turkmenistan to Afghanistan, Pakistan and India. The ADB is acting as the facilitator and coordinator for the project. It is proposed to lay a 56-inch diameter 1,680 KM pipeline with design capacity of 3.2 billion cubic feet of natural gas per annum (Bcfd) from Turkmenistan through Afghanistan and Pakistan up to Pak-India border.

There are two phases of this project. The first phase is free flow phase with estimated cost of 5 to 6 billion dollars, while second phase is installation of compressor stations with the cost of 1.9 to 2 billion dollars. Civil works of the project have already commenced in Afghanistan after the project’s ground breaking (Afghan section) was held last year.

Both, Turkmenistan and Pakistan resolved to hold the Steering Committee meeting of the project in March 2019. The tenders relating to this project will finalise in next two months. The construction equipment will be procured in May 2019. The land acquired in July 2019.

The Federal Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources Ghulam Sarwar at this occasion reiterated the government’s complete commitment towards the early and successful implementation of the project and remained hopeful that the ground breaking of the project can be held in Pakistan this year.

Federal Minister Ghulam Sarwar Khan praised the current state of friendly bilateral relations between both the countries and expressed his satisfaction on the relations being expanded into fields such as technology. The Turkmen Minister termed Pakistan as a brotherly country which holds a significant place in Turkmenistan’s global outlook.

The Turkmen Foreign Minister appraised the Minister of his government’s initiatives in ensuring that the timelines of the project are being met. He appreciated the fact that the HGA has been signed through mutual agreement and consensus. He welcomed Pakistan’s continued commitment and active interest in the TAPI gas project. He appreciated the strong support being received by Pakistan towards the TAPI gas pipeline project.

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