TAPI talks planned during U.N. meeting

Aug. 24, 2010 at 9:11 AM
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ASHGABAT, Turkmenistan, Aug. 24 (UPI) -- Leaders from Ashgabat and Kabul will meet in the United States in September to discuss a trilateral natural gas pipeline, the Turkmen government said.

Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov said Afghan President Hamid Karzai agreed to discuss the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India natural gas pipeline on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly's 65th session scheduled for September at U.N. headquarters in New York.

"The two sides agreed to meet next month in New York ... and discuss in detail the issues of implementation, construction of the transnational gas pipeline Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India, designed to serve as the economic prosperity of the member countries of this large-scale project and the whole region," the Trend News Agency quoted a Turkmen government statement as reading.

Kabul hosts a meeting Sunday on bilateral trade initiatives with Turkmenistan, the report added.

Berdimuhamedov said his country was interested in laying the foundations for economic prosperity in Afghanistan as a way to bring security to the beleaguered country.

The 1,043-mile TAPI pipeline would move gas from the Dauletabad gas field to consumers in Pakistan and India after transiting Afghanistan.

The Asian Development Bank financed a feasibility study for TAPI in 2005 despite the ongoing war in Afghanistan.

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