Afghan President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani (1st right), President of Turkmenistan Kurbanguly Berdymukhamedov (center), and Prime Minister of Pakistan Shahid Khaqan Abbasi attend the inauguration ceremony of TAPI pipeline construction work, in Herat, Afghanistan, Feb 23, 2018. (ELYAS / XINHUA)
HERAT, Afghanistan - Work on TAPI gas pipeline to transfer the natural gas of Turkmenistan to Pakistan and India through Afghanistan was inaugurated in the western Herat province amid tight security on Friday.
Afghan President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani in his speech described the essential Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) pipeline project as a "corridor of development"
Ahead of the inauguration ceremony, Afghan President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani in his speech described the essential Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) pipeline project as a "corridor of development" and stressed for regional cooperation.
Among hundreds of guests attending the ceremony were President of Turkmenistan Kurbanguly Berdymukhamedov, Prime Minister of Pakistan Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and India's Minister of State for External Affairs M.J. Akbar.
President Ghani pointed out that Afghan government's policy is a policy of "connectivity" and South Asia is being connected with Central Asia through Afghanistan.
The Afghan president also noted that the TAPI project demonstrates that Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, Pakistan, India, and other nations look at economic development as key topic of discussion to take the region towards peace and prosperity.
TAPI project, according to officials, would transport 33 billion cubic meters of natural gas from Galkynysh gas reserve of Turkmenistan annually along an 1,800 km route to Fazilka near the border with Pakistan in northern India.
Afghanistan would earn US$500 million as royalty each year from TAPI project, according to Afghan officials.