Gas storage and supply facilities needed for TAPI project


Economic experts have said that Afghanistan needs to set-up sufficient number of gas reservoirs in order to store the natural gas procured from other countries.

Experts added that once the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) project is completed, load will increase and more storage facilities will be required. Presently, Afghanistan lacks in proper storage facilities for natural gas.

In light of the requirement, the Ministry of Mines announced that the TAPI agreement vows to set-up gas reservoirs in Afghanistan.

As the commissioning phase of TAPI gas project nears, economic experts are emphasising the Afghan government to undertake necessary security measures for the 700 km gas pipeline passing through Afghanistan and set-up gas reservoirs alongside the pipeline to ensure a standardised supply and distribution process.

“We hope that with the commissioning of the TAPI gas pipeline project, Afghanistan, apart from receiving transit duty waiver should also be provided sufficient gas. The Afghan government should formulate measures to ensure security of the pipeline passing through its soil and ensure safety of the pipeline,” said Azarakhsh Hafezi, economic analyst.

The Afghan Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) has described the TAPI project beneficial for the regional countries and added that a special force has been trained to provide security for the pipeline.

Talking about the significance of the TAPI project, Wahidullah Waissi, Director General for Economic Cooperation, Ministry of Foreign Affairs said, “Considering the importance of the TAPI project, a special force for the safety of the pipeline has been readied. Afghanistan firmly believes that the project is of great importance for the regional countries.”

On the contrary, the Ministry of Mines pointed out that Afghanistan does not require facilities for supply and storage of natural gas for the initial 10 years, because, gas will be used only for production of electricity. At a later stage, the Ministry plans to provide gas to households through pipelines.

“We intend to establish power generating facilities in Afghanistan. For this purpose, we will seek cooperation of different institutions including the private sector, Ministry of Water and Energy and Breshna,” said an official from the Ministry of Mines.

Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, Pakistan and India will have 25 percent share in the TAPI project. The gas pipeline is being developed by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the estimated cost of the pipeline project is $7.6 billion. The pipeline expected to be completed by 2017, will transport Caspian Sea natural gas from Turkmenistan through Afghanistan into Pakistan and then to India.