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Iran, Pak may develop pipeline sans India

If the project does not reach India, the country will have to import about 600,000 barrels of crude per day.

india Updated: Feb 04, 2006 13:52 IST

Iran has said it would develop the gas pipeline with Pakistan alone if it fails to reach an accord with India over the deal, a news report said.

"Following our prior agreement with Pakistani officials, if for any reason we do not reach an agreement with the Indian side over the gas deal, Iran and Pakistan will independently develop the pipeline project," Mehr News Agency quoted the country's deputy oil minister Mohammad Hadi Nejad-Hosseinian as saying on Friday.

"It is in India's best interests to participate in the project. It does not seem logical that the country act against its national interests," the deputy minister said.

If the project, dubbed "the Peace Pipeline", does not reach India, the country will have to import about 600,000 barrels of crude per day to compensate for the loss, he said.

Hosseinian asserted that other alternatives for the project to deliver Iran's natural gas to India via Pakistan would be "rare, costly, unsafe and transitory".

First Published: Feb 04, 2006 13:39 IST