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Iran would guarantee safety of gas pipeline to India

New Delhi, March 3, IRNA -- Iran declared today that it would guarantee supply of natural gas to India through the proposed pipeline running across Pakistani territory with a trilateral meeting in Islamabad for formulating plans in this regard, reports IRNA correspondent from Bangalore.

"Fortunately, some solutions for the guarantee has been found and some suggestions have been made in this respect. In the coming weeks, authorities of the three countries -India, Iran and Pakistan- will have a common meeting," Iran Parliament's Speaker Gholam Ali Haddad Adel said upon arrival on a two-day official visit to Bangalore today.

Indian Petroleum Minister Mani shankar Aiyar has said Iran will have to ensure security of natural gas supply to India and cover risk of the Pakistani segment of the pipeline by securing adequate financial and sovereign guarantees as well as necessary insurance cover.

"The suggestion generally is that Iran undertakes to bring the gas to India's boundaries and then it seems on the basis of this suggestion, there will be no problem," Haddad Adel said.

The 4.5 billion US dollar, 2,775 km long Iran-India gas pipeline, one-fourth of which will pass through Pakistan, is expected to be completed by 2009 and address the huge demand for gas in India.

Haddad Adel said Islamabad would host the trilateral meeting where officials from the three nations would firm up commitments on assured security and supply of gas through Pakistan.

He said bilateral relations with India were growing stronger. The Speaker who is accompanied by a group of Iranian members of Parliament arrived here on Feb. 27 to bolster inter-parliamentary cooperation between India and Iran.

... Payvand News - 3/3/05 ... --

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