Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his Pakistani counterpart Asif Ali Zardari on 11 March 2013 launched a 7.5 billion dollar gas pipeline project which will link Iran's gas pipeline to that of Pakistan.
The inauguration ceremony of gas pipeline project was held in Iran's Chabahar city and attended by ministers and senior officials from Iran and Pakistan. With the launch of pipeline Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad asserted that West has no right to obstruct Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline project that has nothing to do with Iran's nuclear issue.
Both the president mentioned that the completion of the pipeline is in the interests of peace, security and progress of the two countries and is supposed to consolidate the economic, political and security ties of the two nations.
About the gas Pipeline
• Iran has constructed 900 km of the 1600-km pipeline on its soil.
• Both Iranian and Pakistani firms have undertaken the construction of the remaining part in Pakistan.
• The project is completed by mid-2014, as scheduled; Iran will export 21.5 million cubic metres of natural gas to Pakistan on daily basis.
• The work on the Iranian side is almost complete and on 11 March 2013 saw the construction work start on the Pakistani side.
• A total of 780km of pipeline is to be built in Pakistan by December 2014.
• Tehran has agreed to lend Islamabad 500 million, dollar a third of the estimated 1.5 billion dollar cost of the Pakistani section of the pipeline.
Controversy with the project
The project provoked several warnings of sanctions from the US. Washington stated that the pipeline would enable Tehran to sell more gas, undermining efforts to step up pressure over its nuclear activities.
As per US, if this deal is finalized for a proposed Iran-Pakistan pipeline, it would raise serious concerns under our Iran Sanctions Act.
US State Department's advise saying Pakistan to better look for other energy options instead of the Iran gas project.