ADB may play lead role in TAPI project take-off: Moily

New Delhi, Dec 3 : The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is likely to play a lead transactional role in the take-off of the proposed Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline under supervision of a new company, Petroleum Minister Veerappa Moily said Tuesday.

Addressing the Asia Gas Partnership here, organised by FICCI, Moily said the countries concerned are looking for a lead partner to ensure that TAPI is executed as targeted, and the pipeline is expected to become a reality in the next few years to transport natural gas from Turkmenistan to feed India's energy needs.

The $7.6-billion project will transport gas from Turkmenistan. The 1,680-km pipeline (144 km in Turkmenistan, 735 km in Afghanistan and 800 km in Pakistan) will have the capacity to transport 90 million cubic metres a day (mmcmd) of gas -- 38 mmcmd each for India and Pakistan and the remaining 14 mmcmd for Afghanistan.

The Indian government has earlier approved the formation of a special purpose vehicle (SPV) for the pipeline project and allowed the Gas Authority of India Ltd (GAIL) to join the SPV.

The SPV is required to have an initial contribution of $20 million made up of $5 million from an identified entity from each of the four participating countries.

The 735-km section of the pipeline in Afghanistan will go through sensitive security areas, while the next 800 km through Pakistan will be a test of its resolve to normalise trade with India by allowing safe passage of the gas, say analysts.

--IANS (Posted on 03-12-2013)

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