Wed 29 Nov 2006
Filed under: Business / Trade,News
November 28: An overtly optimistic New Delhi is of the view that out of the three gas pipeline projects India is eyeing to meet its soaring energy needs, the one from Burma will come to fruition first.
Iran-Pakistan-India and Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India are the other two gas pipeline projects being pursued by India.
“All three projects are geopolitically sensitive, but the Burmese pipeline is probably the least so because it is now just between Burma and India, with Bangladesh almost out of the equation from a pipeline routing perspective,” said B.S. Negi, director of business development at the state-run Gas Authority of India Ltd during a media interview in New Delhi.
“The India- Myanmar pipeline, which will stretch over 1,575 kilometres, would become operational in 36 months with a daily capacity of 18-28 million standard cubic meters of gas,” Negi said.
The total project, which also includes 37 kilometres of offshore component for transporting the fuel from the gas fields in the Bay of Bengal, would require an investment of about $3 billion, he added.
However, pricing remains the main hurdle, as Burma has not yet settled the price for its gas. It rejected the bids by India, China, Thailand and South Korea earlier this year. India will have to work out a competitive price to beat its competitors in order to seal the deal and procure Myanmar gas by its targeted date of 2009, the GAIL director said.