Russia wants to participate in the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline project, members of the project said in a joint statement on Friday.
"The parties welcome Russia's interest in participating in implementation of the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India gas pipeline project," the heads of Russia, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Tajikistan said in the statement after signing an agreement in the Tajikistan capital of Dushanbe on development of trade and economic relations.
The project’s participants signed a final agreement to build the pipeline, intended to carry gas to India from Central Asian states, last December. Construction will start in 2012.
The 1,700 kilometer pipeline with a flow capacity of 30 billion cubic meters per year and a rough cost of $4 billion, stalled by the war in Afghanistan, is supported by the Asian Bank for Development. Gas will be supplied from Turkmenistan's Dovletabad deposit which has reserves are estimated at 1.7-4.5 trillion cubic meters.
In October 2010 Russian Deputy Prime Minister Igor Sechin said that country's gas giant Gazprom might participate in a consortium to build the pipeline. India suggested Gazprom join the project as one of the suppliers along with Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.