Future of TAPI

TAPI routeTurkmenistan – the country with giant natural reserves and covered with large deserts. Since 1991, after collapse of the USSR, Turkmenistan begun to resolve problems with some  countries such as Afghanistan, Uzbekistan,Russia,Azerbaijan and Iran. According to some experts, Turkmen government has invariable policy.

Moscow’s increasing influence on Turkmen foreign policy is estimated on a miscellaneous. This country during the various periods of the Afghanistan crisis  always took of a careful position and maintained kind relations with Afghanistan. In spite of the fact, that  some countries did not recognize “Taliban” regime in Afghanistan, Turkmen government establish good diplomatic relations with Taliban regime.

Vakil Motavakkil, former head of “Taliban” MFA said : “The main cause of our good diplomatic relations was Turkmenistan’s position in Afghan-American war”.

Today, the US energy companies would like to invest on Turkmen gas fields. The most potential idea, deliver turkmen gas to Pakistan through Afghan territory. It may considered as another fact of inclination of rapprochement of the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan governments. Construction of Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India Pipeline offered as a project in 1990, when the 80% of Afghanistan territory was under the Taliban authority. In 1992, the US company “JUNICAL” and Argentinian company “BRIDAS” is seeking to invest this project.

In 1997 Taliban repressentatives visited the USA for negotiations with “JUNIKAL”. In spite of all efforts and under the Russian pressure Turkmenistan chose the “BRIDAS”. However, regional pressure of the great countries (Russia,USA,China) has led to failure of this project. Iran has been interested in that the similar gas pipeline passed on its territory. (IPI)

The agreement on building of the gas pipeline, has been signed in 2010 by heads of Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, Pakistan and India. In May of same year Turkmenistan has signed the 20-year-old agreement with Islamabad in honor of sale of turkmen gas to Pakistan.

Pipeline, from which Afghanistan will earn  400 million dollar per year , also  will create around 12 thousand workplaces for Afghans. According to the Afghani press, the total cost of project TAPI is estimated about 8 billion usd. The length of pipe valued as 1700 km. Volume of natural gas whic will be export is 33 billion cub metres.

Pipeline territory : Pipe will start from Dovletabad gas field (Turkmenistan) through Herat,Helmant,Kandahar (Afghanistan), Kvetta (Pakistan) and finish at Fazilka (India).

The USA supports TAPI project, as a strategic project devoted to the development of Afghanistan. Americans always opposed constructions of a gas pipeline which would deliver the Iranian gas to Southern Asia. Southern Asia feels sharp requirement for gas, practical realization of TAPI project, first of all, depends on political and economical stability  in Afghanistan.

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