MANILA, PHILIPPINES – The TAPI Steering Committee has unanimously endorsed State Concern “Turkmengas” as the consortium leader of TAPI Pipeline Company Limited to spearhead efforts to build, finance, own and operate the planned 1,600 kilometer Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) natural gas pipeline.
The endorsement was given during the the Steering Committee’s 22nd meeting attended by Petroleum Ministers of Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India, and senior officials of the Asian Development Bank (ADB), in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan on 6 August 2015.
“The endorsement of Turkmengaz as Consortium Leader is a critical milestone in achieving the successful development of the TAPI pipeline project. It is a glowing endorsement of the continued cooperation among the TAPI countries, with the able assistance of Asian Development Bank, as our Transaction Advisor. When operational, the pipeline will deliver enhanced energy security, business prospects and overall economic stability in the region,” said Baymyrat Hojamuhammedov, Deputy Prime Minister of Turkmenistan.
Once completed, the TAPI pipeline is expected to export up to 33 billion cubic meters of natural gas a year from Turkmenistan to Afghanistan, Pakistan and India over 3 decades. Turkmenistan has the world’s fourth largest proven gas reserves and the pipeline will allow it to diversify its gas export markets. Turkmengaz, the national gas company of Turkmenistan, has over 50 years of experience in the production, development and transportation of gas, as well as construction of gas pipelines. It is anticipated that other suitable companies will join the consortium leader group at a later stage.
ADB has acted as the Secretariat for the TAPI pipeline project since 2003. In 2013, ADB was appointed Transaction Advisor. In the latter role, ADB facilitated the establishment of TAPI Pipeline Company Limited, and has actively been involved in identifying and selecting a consortium leader to spearhead the implementation of the pipeline.
“ADB congratulates all the key stakeholders on achieving this significant milestone. We are honored as Transaction Advisor to have helped advance this historic and regionally important project,” said Sean O’Sullivan, Director General of ADB’s Central and West Asia Department. “Much has been achieved already, and ADB looks forward to helping the TAPI pipeline progress further toward first gas.”
ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth, and regional integration. Established in 1966, it is owned by 67 members – 48 from the region. In 2014, ADB assistance totaled $22.9 billion, including cofinancing of $9.2 billion.