Pak, Iran hold talks on IPI gas pipeline

Pak, Iran hold talks on IPI gas pipeline

Islamabad: Pakistan and Iran are holding three-day talks here on the multi-billion dollar Iran-Pakistan-India (IPI) gas pipeline project though India is not participating in the parleys as differences on some key issues remain to be settled.

Senior officials of the two countries yesterday began talks on the 2,700-km pipeline project expected to be completed in three years at a cost of $ 7 billion . A total of 750 km of the pipeline will pass through Pakistan and it will carry gas from Iran’s South Pars fields.

The two countries are likely to settle some technical issues ahead of the ministerial-level talks on the project, to be held in October or November, media reports said today.

The ongoing talks are a follow-up to the technical talks held in Tehran last month, which were also not attended by India.

The head of the National Gas Exports Company, Nasrullah Saifi, is leading the Iranian side at the talks while the Pakistani team is being led by S Hasan Nawab, a senior petroleum ministry official.

Indian officials told PTI that New Delhi wants the transit fee payable to Pakistan for using its territory for transporting the gas, to be resolved first.