Pakistan and Russia sign MoU on energy cooperation

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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and the Russian Federation on Friday signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) regarding cooperation in oil and gas exploration, construction of trans-national gas pipelines and technology transfer.
According to an official announcement, the MoU was signed by Minister for Petroleum Naveed Qamar and Russian Minister for Energy SI Shmatko in Moscow on Friday.
The MOU lays down mechanism and desire for the two countries to cooperate in oil and gas exploration, construction of trans-national gas pipelines, training, technology transfer and other areas of mutual interest. Qamar said Pakistan and Russia had agreed to pursue joint projects and cooperation in the oil and gas sector.
It was also decided that the Russian government will send a delegation of experts to Pakistan in January 2011 to meet the counterparts and study the data, legal framework and policy with a view to developing a time-bound roadmap of cooperative projects.
During the talks, the Russian minister proposed that the MOU might be followed by an inter-governmental framework agreement to further cement ties.
He expressed his desire to participate in developing joint ventures with the OGDCL in exploration and development of oil and gas prospects in Pakistan and offered technology and investment. Referring to the gas import projects of Pakistan, the Russian minister showed keen interest in the construction and investment of Iran-Pakistan (IP) Gas Pipeline Project as well as the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan India (TAPI) Gas Pipeline Project.
Qamar expressed satisfaction over the developing relations between Pakistan and Russia in the field of energy. He hoped that Russian cooperation will increase the availability of energy in Pakistan. The minister also met with the CEO of Gazprom, Zarubrezhneft Valeriy Gulev, and discussed the ways and means to enhance cooperation in energy.