India, Turkmenistan discuss gas pipeline

November 4th, 2008 - 10:25 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Nov 4 (IANS) India and Turkmenistan Tuesday discussed ways to execute the much-delayed multi-national pipeline project, Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline.Petroleum minister Murli Deora and his Turkmen counterpart Annaguly Deryayev held talks at Ashgabat airport Tuesday. Deora was in Ashgabat for a transit halt, on way to Moscow for a two-day visit.

In a special gesture, the Turkmen minister welcomed Deora at the VIP lounge of the airport, where they held talks for nearly 45 minutes, said a statement issued by the petroleum ministry here.

The discussions were specifically about India’s participation and implementation of the TAPI gas pipeline project as well as increased Indian presence in exploration and production of oil and gas in Turkmenistan, the statement said.

Deora said India would like to “engage Turkmenistan constructively in hydrocarbon sphere”. He added that India would be able to successfully confront the current financial crisis.

Besides, he invited Deryayev to participate in the India-CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) Roundtable on Hydrocarbons to be held Nov 25-26. In return, Deora was invited to an international oil and gas conference exhibition in Turkmenistan in the third week this month.

The public sector companies, Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC), GAIL and Engineers India Ltd will be participating in the Turkmen conference.

Accompanied by a high-powered delegation, Deora reached Moscow, where he will meet Russian leaders including Prime Minister Vladimir Putin to talk about further cooperation in the hydrocarbon sector.

One of his main agenda will be to get Russian approval for ONGC Videsh’s takeover of Russian oil firm Imperial Energy, which has production licences in Tomsk region.

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