View Full Version : Iran, Pakistan agree to push IP pipeline talks

11-27-2013, 02:58 PM

Iran and Pakistan have agreed to accelerate negotiations on the under-construction multi-billion-dollar pipeline projected to carry natural gas from Iran to its eastern energy-thirsty neighbor.

The agreement to speed up talks on the IP (Iran-Pakistan) gas pipeline was reached during a meeting between Pakistani Prime Minister's Advisor on National Security and Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif in Tehran on Tuesday, Pakistanís Foreign Office said in a statement.

The statement added the accord aims at formulating a roadmap and a more realistic time schedule for the implementation of the energy project.

Aziz was in the Iranian capital to attend the 21st Meeting of the Council of Ministers (COM) of the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO). The meeting was held in Tehran November 24-26.

The United States has long been threatening Pakistan with economic sanctions if Islamabad goes ahead with the pipeline project.

The government of Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has, however, made it clear that addressing the countryís longstanding energy problems will be its top priority, and it has no plans to reverse the decision on the completion of IP pipeline.

Iran has already built 900 kilometers of the pipeline on its own soil and is waiting for the 700-kilometer Pakistani side of the pipeline to be constructed.

The IP pipeline is designed to help Pakistan overcome its growing energy needs at a time when the country of over 180 million people is grappling with serious energy shortages.