Shareholders Sign TAPI Investment Accord
Shareholders of the Tapi Pipeline Company have signed the investment agreement to build, own and operate the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India line, the central Asian republic’s energy ministry said April 8.
The initial budget of the 33bn m³/yr project will exceed $200mn and will be used to fund a detailed engineering survey of the 1,814-km route, an environmental impact assessment and some other works.
This will allow an estimate of the total cost of building the line which will pass through difficult terrain. According to specialists’ estimates, it will take up to three years to build.
“Tapi demonstrates unprecedented regional cooperation between the Tapi member-states to supply the region with the energy that will contribute to the economic growth of the countries of the region,” said Yagshigeldy Kakaev, deputy chairman of the cabinet of ministers.
The groundbreaking ceremony was last December.
Over 214 km of the pipe will pass through Turkmenistan, 774 km through Afghanistan and 826 km will stretch from Pakistan to Fazilka on the Indian border.
According to the Asian Development Bank, the agreement will pave the way for long-term gas sales that will allow Turkmenistan to diversify its gas export markets and support growth. Apart from a small volume sold to Iran, its exports only flow to China, from reserves developed by Chinese companies.
"Tapi exemplifies ADB's key role in promoting regional cooperation and integration over the past 20 years. It will unlock economic opportunities, transform infrastructure, diversify the energy market for Turkmenistan, and enhance energy security for the region," said Sean O'Sullivan, the director-general of ADB's central and west Asia department.