Islamabad, April 30, IRNA-Iran warned on Sunday that oil prices could go substantially higher if the United Nations slapped sanctions on the country for its nuclear program but hoped its oil and gas sectors will not be sanctioned.
"Any action like that will increase oil price very high. And I believe that U.N. or its bodies will not put any sanctions on oil or gas industry," Iran Deputy Minister of Petroleum for International Affairs, Hadi Nejad Hosseinian told a news conference at the conclusion of three-day talks in with Pakistani officials.
"I do not think any body could put any sanction on oil and gas industry, Mr Hosseinian said when asked what would be the future of the multi-billion Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline project.
Ahmad Waqar, Secretary of Pakistan Petroleum, who led delegation in talks with Iran, also played down the threat of sanctions and said Pakistan is dealing with the project in view of its energy requirements.
"Pakistan is viewing this project keeping in view its national interests. There are our energy requirements. We need energy for sustaining economic growth and the decisions taken by our leadership is based on that," Mr Waqar told the news conference with his Iranian deputy oil Minister.
We hope substantial progress ahead of the ministerial meeting in June, he said.
Both the sides in the 7th meeting of the Iran-Pakistan Joint Working Group (JWG) on Iran-Pakistan-India (IPI) agreed to make immediate efforts for concluding the bilateral arrangements, said a statement issued at the press conference.
The JWG examined in detail various financial, commercial, technical and legal aspects of the project.
Major issues discussed in the Working Group meeting included Gas Pricing Formula, Project Structure, Project Feasibility, Gas Off-take Volumes and Gas Sales & Purchase Agreement.
Iran agreed to enhance off-take volumes for Pakistan from 2.1 Bcfd to 2.8 Bcfd in case the project is implemented bilaterally, the statement said.
The two sides resolved that the contracts and agreements for the projects would be developed and finalized expeditiously.
Both sides deliberated upon different gas pricing formulae and agreed to the basic principles for the formula.
Both sides further agreed to a project structure wherein gas would be delivered at Iran-Pakistan border under a supply agreement.
The statement said that both sides agreed to develop a Joint Declaration Document signifying the commitment of both the governments to the Project for signature in the joint ministerial meeting in June 2006 at Tehran.
Both sides reaffirmed to try to develop Gas Pipeline project by adopting international best practices and standards.
The next JWG meeting will be held in Islamabad on May 25, 2006.
Petroleum Ministers of both the countries would meet in Tehran in June 2006 on mutually agreed date to sign Join Declaration of the Project.
Dr Ahmed Waqar said that the construction cost of Pakistan is likely to be between 2 and 2.5 billion dollars but detailed study will be conducted.
He said the gas would be received on the Iran-Pakistan border and later the pipeline will be coming to the town of Bhung near Rahim Yar Khan in Punjab.
Asked if China can benefit from the project, the Secretary of Pakistan Petroleum said this is the great vision of the President and the Prime Minister that Pakistan is going to become an energy corridor for China and obviously it would be an important elements in that.
If India does not join this project, then we can go ahead on bilateral basis by Iran and Pakistan, he said.
He said there could also be a possibility of two parallel pipelines coming, meeting India requirements as well as Pakistan's requirements.
Things still to have sorted out at bilateral levels, he said.
... Payvand News - 4/30/06 ... --