TAPI Gas Pipeline (Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India) | UPSC Notes

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TAPI Gas Pipeline UPSC

• The Turkmenistan–Afghanistan–Pakistan–India (TAPI) Pipeline, also called the Trans-Afghanistan Pipeline, is a natural gas pipeline that is being built by the Galkynysh–TAPI Pipeline Company Limited with help from the Asian Development Bank.

Natural gas from the Galkynysh Gas Field in Turkmenistan will be sent through Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India on the route.

Turkmenistan was the first country to start building the project on December 13, 2015. Work on the Afghan part of the project began in February 2018, and work on the Pakistani part was supposed to start in December 2018. The word “TAPI” is made up of the first letters of the names of these countries. Proponents of the project see it as a modern continuation of the Silk Road. As of 2022, building of the pipeline has stopped.

TAPI pipeline route information

• When finished, the 1,814-kilometer gas pipeline will go through Afghanistan on its way to Pakistan and India. Gas from the Galkynysh gas field in Turkmenistan will be sent through the TAPI gas route to Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India.

• The pipeline will go from the Mary area of Turkmenistan all the way to Afghanistan, which is 214 km away. Along the highway, the Afghanistan part will be built.

• The pipeline will go through Afghanistan’s Kandhar and Herat highways for a total of 774 km. It will go through the towns of Quetta and Multan, which are both in Pakistan, and end in Fazilka, which is on the Indian side of the border between Pakistan and India.

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The TAPI project is being paid for by the Asian Development Bank (ADB), which is also helping with the deal.

TAPI pipeline benefits

• The pipeline is supposed to make it easier for countries in the area to trade and work together in new ways. It will also help keep peace and security between the four countries.

• The project will provide long-term energy security for more than 1.5 billion people in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India.

Turkmenistan is also expected to get more money from selling petrol because of the project. Afghanistan and Pakistan will also get money from transport fees.

• However, after a ground breaking event in Serhetabad, Turkmenistan, in February 2018, political instability and violence in Afghanistan slowed down the project.

Why the TAPI pipeline is important

• India’s plan for TAPI makes Turkmenistan a key hub for its connections with the rest of Central Asia. Turkmenistan, which is landlocked, will also be able to find alternative export partners through the much-anticipated TAPI pipeline, which comes with few conditions.

• The TAPI pipeline is a small but important step away from coal in areas that are ready for economic growth. Residents of Mumbai, Karachi, Delhi, and Islamabad may have less trouble with lung diseases caused by air pollution.

• The TAPI pipeline is important for more than just energy security; it is also important for geopolitics. Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India may be more stable as a result of TAPI because they will have more energy security.

• India is the world’s third largest energy consumer and the fourth largest importer of liquefied natural gas.

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• According to the BP Energy Outlook 2035, India will account for 9% of the world’s energy consumption, but its share of global production will stay the same at 5%. During the same time period, the demand for natural gas will rise by 131%, but the amount of natural gas made in the United States won’t come close to meeting the demand. Because of this, India is projected to import four times as much natural gas by the year 2040. This energy gap, both now and in the future, shows why India is interested in TAPI and why the project is important for India.

• The project also has the benefit of giving a way in to Central Asia, making it easier to make energy deals or build pipes with this energy-rich area in the future. This is a very important factor for India, which has a big economy and a lot of people. Also, the pipeline could lead to a trade route between the four countries that goes all the way to Kazakhstan.

The TAPI Gas Pipeline will change the way politics work in this area and help us build trust and confidence as friends and partners in making things better.