TAPI gas transportation, transit fee agreements to be signed in 2018-19

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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan is scheduled to sign gas transportation and transit fee agreements, pipeline service rules and complete Front End Engineering Design (FEED) activities, under Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India (TAPI) project, during next fiscal year.

“The TAPI project activities including the signing of gas transportation agreement, pipeline service rules, transit fee agreement and completion of FEED work will be implemented during 2018-19,” official sources told APP.

In February this year, they said the TAPI project while making a tangible progress had entered Afghanistan from Turkmenistan after the latter completed construction of the gas pipeline in its section.

Answering a question, the sources said Inter State Gas Systems (Pvt) Limited (ISGSL), which is the project execution company in Pakistan, had initiated the FEED activities of the TAPI gas pipeline project’s Pakistan section in March 2017.

“Since then the company has moved diligently towards TAPI gas pipeline’s practical implementation,” they added.

The TAPI gas pipeline, first envisaged in the 1990’s had been lying in the backburner for many years but saw revitalization in the present government’s tenure, which made it a key component of the government’s National Energy Policy to import gas.

They expressed confidence that the pipeline would substantially add inexpensive, reliable and environment-friendly energy into Pakistan’s national pool and help in achieving socio-economic progress in the region.

Highlighting the importance of the project, the sources said the pipeline would help increase the power generation capacity to meet the country’s future energy needs, create more job opportunities in backward areas along the pipeline route and further strengthen the national economy.

Under the project, a 56-inch diameter 1,680km pipeline, having the capacity to flow 3.2 billion cubic feet per day (bcfd) gas, would be laid from Turkmenistan through Afghanistan and Pakistan up to Pak-India border, which is scheduled to complete in the year 2020.

Through the pipeline, funded by Asian Development Bank (ADB), Pakistan and India would be provided 1.325 bcfd gas each and Afghanistan would get 0.5 bcfd gas.

Meanwhile, sources informed that in Pakistan, the financial close of the TAPI gas pipeline was expected to be achieved this year, following which construction work would start on this multi-billion dollars project.

“The construction work on the project will start after the completion of technical studies and achieving the financial close, which is expected to be completed during this year,” they said.

They said TAPI Pipeline Company Limited (TPCL), the project executing company, had been jointly formed by the four TAPI parties, which appointed the consultant to undertake the pre-FID activities including the detailed survey of the entire route, environment impact assessment studies and FEED.

The sources informed that the procurement process for lines pipe, long lead items and appointment of Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) contractor had been started. While the company has appointed a legal counsel for rendering legal services on the agreements to be executed by the company, they added.