Pakistan wants gas pipeline before agreeing diesel imports

Vol 8, PW 12 (08 Sep 04) News in Brief

Pakistan insists that Delhi first approve a cross-border gas pipeline from either Iran or Turkmenistan before it agrees to import diesel from India.

PETROWATCH understands Pakistani officials informally made this clear during a visit to Islamabad by an Indian delegation led by commerce secretary Dipak Chatterji on 11th and 12th August. Pakistani officials said India could supply a major portion of its diesel imports because it is mostly used in Pakistans Punjab province, which lies adjacent to Indias Punjab province.

But we were told all this is subject to India agreeing on the gas pipeline, a member of the delegation tells this report. On 6th September oil minister Mani Shankar Aiyar announced that India is ready to export up to 1.5m t/y diesel to Pakistan through a pipeline from Jalandhar in Punjab to Lahore.

Pakistan imports around 9m t/y diesel at Karachi, mainly from Kuwait.