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Work on Afghan section of TAPI project finally begins

Work on Afghan section of TAPI project finally begins

By
On
Feb 23, 2018 - 11:48

HERAT CITY (Pajhwok): Construction work on the Afghan section of a multibillion dollars natural gas pipeline -- linking energy-rich Turkmenistan to Pakistan and India -- got under way on Friday.

"Galkynysh, the world´s second largest gas-field, will feed the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) pipeline," Turkmen President Kurbanguly Berdymukhamedov said.

Berdymukhamedov made the announcement in the western city of Herat together with President Ashraf Ghani, Pakistani Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and India’s Minister of State for External Affairs M.J. Akbar.

"A new chapter of economic growth and regional connectivity starts right here in the economic and cultural hub of Afghanistan," Ghani tweeted soon after his arrival in Herat City.

The Afghan and Turkmen leaders also inaugurated work on the construction of a railway link between their countries. Tight security arrangements have been put in place for the pipeline construction through Afghanistan.

Afghanistan is expected to earn some $500 million a year in transit duties from the pipeline, which will help create thousands of jobs.

At a meeting with the Turkmen leader in Mary, Pakistan Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi hailed the TAPI pipeline project as an important scheme for his energy-deficient country.

About possible purchase of electricity from Turkmenistan, Abbasi said the deal would add a new dimension to relations between the two countries. He took part in the link-up ceremonies of TAPI pipeline and associated projects.

Abbasi lauded the president’s vision of TAPI as a trade and transit corridor for gas, electricity transmission and fiber optic. The Gwadar Port would provide the most efficient access to the sea for Turkmenistan, he hoped.

Berdymukhamedov was in the western Afghan city of Herat together with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, Pakistani Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and India’s Minister of State for External Affairs M.J. Akbar.

Supported by the US and the Asian Development Bank, the project has been delayed because of the problem in Afghanistan. The $10 billion pipeline will carry 33 billion cubic metres of gas annually.

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