TAPI Pipeline Project

TAPI Pipeline Project

The Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India Pipeline (TAPI), also known as Trans-Afghanistan Pipeline, is being being developed by the Galkynysh TAPI Pipeline Company Limited with participation of the Asian Development Bank. The pipeline will transport natural gas from the Galkynysh Gas Fields in Turkmenistan, and run through Afghanistan into Pakistan and then to India. Construction on the project started in Turkmenistan on 13 December 2015, work on the Afghan section began in February 2018, and work on the Pakistani section was planned to commence in December 2018 but has been delayed, in part to this years problems with Covid-19. India has already completed its part of the pipeline.

The 1814-kilometer pipeline has been designed for a 30-year period and is expected to supply about 33 billion cubic meters (bcm) of gas per year from Turkmenistan's giant Galkynysh gas field through the Afghan cities of Herat and Kandahar, as well as the Pakistani cities Quetta and Multan. The pipeline ends at the Indian city of Fazilka, located near its border with Pakistan. Five bcm out of the entire volume will be absorbed by Afghanistan, while Pakistan and India will receive 14 bcm each. There have also been discussions about China joining the route. If so, this would require the building of a new link from Pakistan to China. This could act as alternative to Chinese plans to build a fourth China-to-Turkmenistan pipeline, which has to cross several mountain ranges, meaning it would be cheaper and easier for China to build a line from Pakistan across the Karakoram Range to its Western border.

The implementation of the project will be in two phases; Pre-FID (Final Investment Decision) and Post-FID phases. In the Pre-FID phase, the project enfolds four areas; Legal Framework, Finance/Funding, Surveys, and Land Acquisition. The pipeline construction begins in the post-FID phase.

The government of Afghanistan has signed several key agreements that encompass Inter-Governmental Agreement, TAPI Legal Framework Agreement, Shareholders Agreement, Gas Sale and Purchase Agreement, Investment Agreement, Operational Agreement, and Heads Agreement, without which the initial steps towards implementation of the project was inconceivable. Meanwhile, Heads of Terms for the Host Government Agreement and the Host Government Agreement are about to be signed. Other key agreements such as Gas Transportation Agreement, Gas Pipeline System Rules in the pipeline, Security Protocol, Land Services Agreement and Land Rights agreement are to be finalized soon. Technically, the project required numerous studies and surveys that Afghanistan has completed; such as Land Acquisition, Rout, LIDAR (bathymetrical, topographical), ESIA, and Technical and Non-Technical Unexploded Ordinance surveys. On the other hand, concerning financial provisions, Afghanistan on their end has taken crucial steps to enable the develop

In the external context, the TAPI pipeline project enhances cooperation among the central and south Asian countries. The project will open the corridor for potential cooperation on energy, communication, and transportation, that will ensure economic, political, and diplomatic advantages for Afghanistan. Globally, Afghanistan's reputation is associated with war and terrorism that has overshadowed its economic importance in the region, however, with the implementation of TAPI Project, Afghanistan's economic significance will rehabilitate that will be followed by peace and stability internally. In the internal dimension, TAPI Project plays a significant role in developing the economy of Afghanistan by generating multi-million-dollar revenue, providing direct and indirect employment opportunities, infrastructure development, and energy production. Annually, the TAPI project will add approximately US$400 Million to Afghanistan's revenue, and it will create thousands of direct and indirect employment opportunities

Afghanistan will get 500 Million cubic meters of gas in the first decade, that will increase to 1 billion cubic meters in the second decade and 1.5 billion cubic meters in the 3rd decade. Besides power generation for industries from gas, in the long run, Afghanistan has the vision of providing gas for households in the central and southern provinces and potential capability to produce fertilizers as Afghanistan has an agriculture-based economy.


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