Pakistan, Iran hold pricing talks on IPI

May 22, 2009 at 12:32 PM
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TEHRAN, May 22 (UPI) -- A Pakistani energy delegation left for Tehran on Friday to discuss pricing terms for the Iran-Pakistan-India natural gas pipeline.

Asim Hussain, the top energy adviser to Islamabad, led the delegation in an effort to hammer out gas sale and purchase agreements. He leads a team that includes G. A. Sabri, secretary of the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources, and Rashid Lone, managing director at Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Ltd., the Associated Press of Pakistan reports.

Sabri says Islamabad gave permission to the team to negotiate on the price of gas imports through the long-delayed pipeline.

The APP report says Islamabad hopes to persuade Iran to lower the gas import price from 80 percent of the price of crude oil to somewhere between 70 percent and 78 percent.

The proposed 1,724-mile pipeline from the South Pars gas field in Iran would have an initial estimated capacity of 3.8 billion cubic feet of gas per day.

Pakistan would import 750 million cubic feet of natural gas per day from the pipeline.

The role of India in the project remains uncertain, and various Iranian media reports have referred to the pipeline as simply the Iran-Pakistan pipeline.

The pipeline was first proposed in 1989.

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