The first deputy of the Prime Minister, Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, said that the practical work on TAPI (Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India) will begin soon.
Baradar said that there have been some challenges in the acquisition of land, but efforts are underway to resolve the challenges.
“There are some problems with the acquisition of land because some of the people don’t want to give up their lands. The efforts are underway. Whenever we take possession of the land, we will start work,”
The acting minister of the Minister of Mines and Petroleum, Shuhabuddin Delawar, said that the talks on the price of gas and its quantity have been conducted but the exact time for the start of the project has not been determined.
“The issue of gas for Herat’s districts, particularly the industrial park, have been discussed. The price of gas has been discussed and positive steps have been taken,” he said.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that efforts are underway to begin the TAPI pipeline project as soon as possible.
“We hope their (Turkmenistan team) come here for assessment soon. The Islamic Emirate is ready regarding the implementation of the plan,” said Shafay Azam, head of the department of economic relations of MoFA.
This comes as the Pakistani media reported that Islamabad has received a strategic commitment from Turkmenistan for the construction of the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline.
“Only Turkmenistan has offered Pakistan a strategic commitment for the construction of TAPI, and it is also engaged with Afghanistan which will increase funds beyond their annual budget,” Minister of State for Energy Musaddiq Malik said as quoted by the Business Recorder.
“The start of TAPI pipeline project is politically and economically important for the people and the country. Particularly, it is important for the industries relying on gas—and it also could benefit the production of energy,” said Sakhi Ahmad Paiman, deputy head of the Afghanistan Chamber of Industry and Mines (ACIM).
The TAPI project crosses through Herat, Farah, Nimroz, Helmand and Kandahar to Pakistan and India.
“If Pakistan has really understood that the TAPI pipeline project will not only benefit Turkmenistan and India but it will also be effective for Afghanistan and Pakistan, I think the TAPI pipeline will be extended because Pakistan is the only country among these four countries which make hurdles, in fact,” said Sayed Masoud, an economist.
The pipeline will span 1,814 km with 735 km of it crossing through Afghanistan.