Iran offers Pakistan help for multi-billion gas pipeline construction
Iran offered Pakistan help for construction of a multi-billion-dollar gas pipeline. Iran and Pakistan set up a joint working committee to finalize a deal for laying Pakistan's portion of pipeline by Tehran.
Iran also offered to set up an oil refinery in Pakistan. Earlier, it had discussed a plan to lay an oil pipeline to Gwadar where a refinery would be set up to process crude oil. The proposals were made during two days talks last week in Islamabad.
Iranian authorities reiterated their resolve to provide technical and financial help for constructing gas pipeline. A joint working committee will consider different options for Iran to lay pipeline.
Tehran had agreed to provide $250 million and willing to arrange more financing through commercial banks.
German-based firm ILF completed detailed engineering design of pipeline and according to interim feasibility report, project will cost $1.2 billion to $1.5 billion. If local companies participate, cost will come down and if foreign firms undertake the venture it will go up. There is also option under which local and Iranian companies will join hands to complete project.
Though Iran is an option to strike deal on government-to- government basis, Pakistan is also discussing construction of pipeline with China and Russia.
Iran-Pakistan joint committee on oil, gas, energy meeting this week in Islamabad discussed bilateral cooperation in oil and gas sectors. Iranian team was headed by Dr Ahmad Khaledi, Deputy Oil Minister for Internal Affairs. Pakistan team was led by Abid Saeed, Additional Secretary Petroleum & Natural Resources Ministry. Iran team expressed intention to invest in hydrocarbon exploration, production including upstream and midstream sectors.