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Pakistan expects draft accord on Iran gas sales by December

Islamabad, Nov 21, IRNA-Pakistan is hopeful that the draft accord on gas sales from the proposed Iran-Pakistan-India (IPI) gas pipeline will be ready by second week of next month.

The draft accord on gas sales will be provided both to Pakistan and India, said Rashid Lone, who is chief executive of Pak-Iran Inter State Committee and head of Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited.

Nawai Waqt newspaper reported in its Monday issue that if all went well, a final agreement among Iran, Pakistan and India would be signed in June next year to lay the multi-billion pipeline.

He was talking to the widely-circulated newspaper after his visit to Iran and India.

Lone was also part of the Pak-Iran Joint Working Group deliberations in Tehran on November 16-17, during which both sides xpressed satisfaction over the progress of talks.

He expressed satisfaction that negotiations were moving ahead as scheduled, adding two major stages had been covered successfully, including the signing of memorandum of understanding in July last year and the recent determination of length and width of the pipeline: daily consumption of gas and demand and supply-related matters.

After the construction of the pipeline, the official said that Pakistan would purchase one billion cubic feet gas daily in 2010-2011 and it would be doubled in 2013-2014.

Likewise, India would use 2 billion cubic feet in the same period and gas consumption would reach 3 billion cubic feet in 2013-2014, he pointed out.

However, he said that the fixing of final price of gas would take time, but it has been decided that pricing would be fixed keeping in view fluctuation of petroleum products in the international market, the daily reported.

To a question, the official said that during the last week of December, a Pakistan delegation would visit India, and in January Indian experts would come to Pakistan for further talks on the proposed gas pipeline.

The idea to lay the project surfaced in mid-90s, but no headway could be made towards its realization, mainly because of seething Pak-India tensions on Kashmir issue.

However, after the start of Pak-India peace process early last year, there has been significant progress vis-a-vis the proposed pipeline.

... Payvand News - 11/21/05 ... --

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