For many, the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (Tapi) gas pipeline is nothing but a pipe dream.
Its starting point is in Turkmenistan, one of the most isolated and closed-for-business states in the world, before it goes through war-torn Afghanistan and then reaches two countries that are hard to describe as partners – Pakistan and India.
However, Turkmenistan insists that the pipeline’s construction will start by the end of 2015. The visit in May of Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to Ashgabat seemed to confirm this – both sides pledged to put fast track the project.
Likewise the recent visit of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Turkmenistan is also being seen as a boost to the project.
The proposed 1,420km-long (882-mile) pipeline will carry 33 billion cubic meters (bcm) of gas a year from Galkynysh, making it one of the world’s biggest onshore gas fields.
Pakistan and India will each get 42%…
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