Construction of TAPI in Afghanistan will begin this year. The gas pipeline will be guarded by 30 thousand soldiers

On January 8, a Turkmen delegation led by Deputy Foreign Minister Vepa Khadzhiyev held talks in Afghanistan with members of the Afghan government on the construction of the TAPI gas pipeline, the Turkmen Foreign Ministry reported .

In particular, Khadzhiyev met with Deputy Prime Minister of Afghanistan Abdul Salam Hanafi , Deputy Foreign Minister Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanikzai , Minister of Mining and Petroleum Products Shahabuddin Delawar , as well as with Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock Movlavi Sader Azan .

According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan, during the negotiations, the parties expressed their readiness for further cooperation in promoting the construction of the TAPI gas pipeline, the TAP power transmission line and the railway from Turkmenistan to some provinces of Afghanistan.

According to the Afghan news agency Pajhwok , after a meeting with the Turkmen delegation, Minister of Mining and Oil Products Shahabuddin Delawar told reporters that the parties agreed to take the necessary measures to ensure the safety of TAPI. Construction of a gas pipeline in Afghanistan will begin in the second half of this year, and transparent mechanisms will be used to acquire land through which the pipeline will pass.

“Previously, over the decades, there were many problems in Afghanistan due to which it was not possible to implement small projects, but now the security situation has improved, so we can start implementing this project, worth between seven and nine billion dollars,” Delaware said and clarified that a decision on whether the security of TAPI will be provided by state forces or private companies has not yet been made.

On January 10, on the official page of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (as the Taliban officially call the country), a message was published on Twitter that the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the country will form a unit of 30 thousand soldiers to ensure the safety of TAPI.

In December 2021, President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov once again ordered government members to strictly monitor the construction of the TAPI gas pipeline, after which the Turkmen delegation, led by Foreign Minister Rashid Meredov, went to Pakistan and India to promote the project. Representatives of these countries expressed concerns about the unstable situation in Afghanistan, although Pakistani President Arif Alvi said he was interested in the early completion of the gas pipeline.

Source: Chronicles of Turkmenistan