Who: Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India Gas Pipeline project
What: Construction work started
When: 13 December 2015
Construction work on the TAPI (Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India) Gas Pipeline project started in Turkmenistan on 13 December 2015. The work started after the button to begin the welding process of the project was pressed.
The button was pressed by Vice President of India Hamid Ansari along with Prime Minister of Pakistan Nawaz Sharif, President of Afghanistan Ashraf Ghani and President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimohamedov.
The TAPI project is intended to deliver Caspian Sea natural from the energy-rich former Soviet republic Turkmenistan to three South Asian countries.
The pipeline will carry the gas from the Dauletabad gas field in Turkmenistan to the Indian town of Fazilka, in the Punjab near the Pakistan-India border. The pipeline will cross the Afghan cities of Herat and Kandahar as well as Pakistan cities of Quetta and Multan.
The four countries signed the TAPI gas pipeline (also known as Trans-Afghanistan Pipeline) deal in September 2010. It is a natural gas pipeline being developed by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) at an estimated cost of 10 billion US dollars. It will become operational by 2018.
Turkmenistan will lead the consortium to build the project and the remaining members will invest according to the techno-commercial viability, shareholders agreement and investment agreement.
The abbreviation TAPI comes from the first letters of those countries. Proponents of the project see it as a modern continuation of the Silk Road.