Pakistan postpones TAPI meeting

Vol 11, PW 15 (29 Nov 07) News in Brief

Continuing political turmoil in Pakistan after President Pervez Musharraf declared a state of emergency has led to the postponement of a meeting of the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan gas pipeline Steering Committee scheduled for November 28 and 29 in Islamabad.

An Indian oil ministry delegation was set to participate in the meeting to mark India’s formal entry into this project, which has the wholehearted backing of the United States. “Pakistan told us the meeting has been postponed because of lack of scheduling,â€‌ says an Indian oil ministry source.

Pakistan, we hear, has proposed December 11 and 12 as the new dates for the meeting, also to be held in Islamabad. “These dates have yet to be finalised.

â€‌ Indian and Pakistani officials were also scheduled to discuss tariff and transit fees for a separate overland gas pipeline from Iran, stoutly opposed by the US. “This will most likely happen after the TAPI meeting in Islamabad on December 11 and 12,â€‌ we hear.