Iranian-Indian gas pipeline evaluated
Iran and India are currently evaluating the construction of a 2,000-kilometer long gas pipeline from Iran’s offshore gas fields to India via Pakistan. Total costs of the pipeline are estimated at $4 billion, according to Al-Hayat daily.
The project will make Iran India’s largest liquefied natural gas supplier. Costs of transporting gas to India through the pipeline will be 50 percent less than from other nations, including some Arabian Gulf states.
The overland pipeline plan has raised certain security issues for India, which has fought three wars with Pakistan since the country won independence in 1947. However, a deep-sea pipeline, which would avoid such risk, would cost approximately ten times more than an overland passage.
A third option proposed and subsequently ruled out has been a plan to transport liquefied natural gas to India by ship. However, this scenario puts Iran at a risk of strong competition from the Arab Gulf states. Thus, the overland pipeline is currently considered the most feasible option.
Recently, India and Iran signed six agreements to promote cooperation in energy and various other fields. The deals came in the wake of a visit by India’s prime minister to Iran in April, the first such visit since 1993.
Both countries have stressed an interest in increasing Iran's role as an energy supplier to India’s growing energy market. India’s gas import dependency is expected to jump from the current 53 percent to 91 percent by 2025, while its oil import dependency is projected at 78 percent by the same year. –(MENA Report)
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)