TAPI Hires Italian Consultant
Turkmenistan’s state gas firm Turkmengaz has hired Italy’s Rina as a technical consultant for supervision and project support services at the Turkmen section of the TAPI pipeline, the Italian firm said in a statement on December 4.
The contract is worth $13mn, Rina said, noting that up to 50 of its personnel would be working with Turkmengas.
TAPI is a decades-old project to route a 33bn m3/yr, 1,814-km pipeline from Turkmenistan through Afghanistan, Pakistan and India, at a cost of $10bn. The Turkmen section is 214 km in length and will cost $1bn to build, according to Rina.
Exactly how much work has been undertaken on the Turkmen section is difficult to determine, given authoritarian Turkmenistan’s penchant for secrecy and disinformation. A formal ground-breaking ceremony took place in December 2015. But it was not until April this year that Russia’s Sberbank approved a letter of credit for a $219mn contract won by a Russian pipe mill for the supply of pipes for its entire length.
A final investment decision on the overall pipeline is scheduled for early next year, but experts doubt this goal will be met, because of difficulties securing financing.