|Published : 16 Oct 2016, 21:49:09|
India, Russia to study building $25b pipeline
PANAJI, Oct 16 (PTI): India and Russia have agreed to explore building the world's most expensive pipeline costing close to USD 25 billion to ferry natural gas from Siberia to the world's third biggest energy consuming nation.
The pipeline is to connect Russian gas grid to India through a 4,500 km to 6,000 km pipeline, officials said.
The shortest route will entail bringing the pipeline through Himalayas into Northern India, a route which poses several technical challenges.
Alternately, the pipeline can come via Central Asian nations, Iran and Pakistan into Western India. However, the route will be expensive when compared to the long discussed but shorter and cheaper Iran-Pakistan-India pipeline. Tehran may suggest India take its gas through IPI rather than building such an expensive pipeline, they said.
The third and the longest alternative is to lay a pipeline through China and Myanmar into North East India bypassing Bangladesh.
According to preliminary cost estimate prepared by state-owned Engineers India Ltd, which on Saturday signed an agreement with Russian gas monopoly Gazprom for studying the Russia-India pipeline, the longest route of 6,000 km may cost close to USD 25 billion. The cost of transporting gas may be USD 12 per million British thermal unit, according to EIL.
The MoU signed in the presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin at the India-Russia Annual Summit on sidelines of the 8th BRICS Summit here, also envisages roping in ONGC Videsh Ltd, gas utility GAIL India Ltd and Petronet LNG Ltd for the study.