TAPI participants sign document in Ashgabat
Turkmenistan, Ashgabat, Sept. 21 / Trend H.Hasanov /
The sectoral ministers of the countries participating in the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline project signed a framework agreement in Ashgabat this week.
In the near future, the document will be agreed upon in accordance with domestic procedures, a press release stated after the signing ceremony.
As previously reported, the leaders of TAPI countries will likely meet in Ashgabat in December to sign an intergovernmental agreement on the project's implementation. A draft agreement was discussed and approved recently at a meeting in Ashgabat, which was attended by the sectoral ministers of a project steering committee and the Asian Development Bank.
The participants unanimously stressed the "exceptional importance of the transnational infrastructural project, which aims not only to ensure long-term supplies of natural gas from Turkmenistan to the major countries of South Asia, but also to provide a powerful impetus for sustained socioeconomic development, peace and stability in the Asian region."
"Given the project's relevance, representatives of Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India expressed their desire to accelerate its implementation," the press release added.
The length of the TAPI could reach 1,680 kilometers, with a design capacity of 30 billion cubic meters of natural gas per year. The route is planned from the Turkmen Dovletabat fields through Herat and Kandahar (Afghanistan), via the districts of Quetta (Pakistan), to Fazlaka on the India-Pakistan border. The preliminary project costs are estimated at $3.3 billion.
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