India and Iran discuss gas supply project
India and Iran are studying the possibility of supplying Iranian gas through a deep-water offshore gas pipeline to
India, Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Mani Shankar Aiyar said.
Aiyar said New Delhi and Tehran are looking into various aspects of the proposal, including different modes of transportation, route options and related political, security, economic and technical issues for supplying Iranian gas to India.
The deep water offshore gas pipeline will involve the laying of pipe in sea water at a depth of about 3,600 meters
for a large part of the route which will be outside of Pakistan's Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), he said.
Regarding a land gas pipeline option from Iran to India through Pakistan, Aiyar told the Upper House that there were security concerns which had to be addressed to New Delhi's satisfaction. To a query whether Iran had agreed to bear 50 % cost of the project, he said funding aspects had not been discussed.
The minister said Pakistan had, from time to time, expressed its support to the project involving the three countries
and its willingness to address India's concerns regarding the security of supply. Pakistan had also indicated its
willingness to hold talks in this regard, he disclosed.
Aiyar said no deadline had been fixed so far for making a final decision on the project.