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US Companies Seek Incentive from Turkmenistan to Participate in TAPI Project

U.S. companies seek an incentive from Turkmenistan in order to participate in the TAPI (Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India) pipeline project, explained Robert Blake, the U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia, during his visit to Central Asia.

"Many American companies are very interested in participating," he said, noting that the will be a road show going to the United States as well as other countries.

Stressing that progress on this issue depends on the offer, Blake added: "There are a lot of risks to participating in such a pipeline. Part of their consideration will be what kind of incentives Turkmenistan will be prepared to offer international companies to get involved in that project. We will see when the road show takes place."

Blake said the road show will take place sometime in September, and will involve discussions about who is going to form and lead this consortium to actually build the pipeline. "This is a crucial series of discussions that will take place," he mentioned.

The project was supposed to be implemented in the early nineties, when the operator was the American company Unocal, leading an international consortium. The idea came to naught after the Taliban loudly declared itself the leader of the major transit country – Afghanistan – where a significant part of the pipe would be laid.

The Ashgabat interstate agreement of members stated that the practical implementation of the TAPI project signed in late 2010 is the base document to promote the project.

Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdimuhammadov said during a recent meeting that holding a road show with the participation of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in Singapore, New York and London may attract major investors in the construction of TAPI.

According to Penspen, which has developed a feasibility study on the project, its design capacity is 33 billion cubic meters of gas a year. The length of 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 in Afghanistan, via the districts of Quetta in Pakistan, to Fazlaka on the India-Pakistan border.

Source: Trend

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