NEW DELHI, March 23 Two major U.S. oil companies
are interested in a four-country pipeline that would ship gas
worth billions of dollars from Turkmenistan to India and
Pakistan, a U.S. government official said on Friday.
The building of the U.S.-backed "TAPI" pipeline through some
of Afghanistan's most volatile regions presents a major
challenge, adding to the project's other hurdles such as gas
pricing and transit fees.
"A couple of major U.S. oil companies are interested," said
Daniel Stein, senior advisor to the special envoy for Eurasian
Energy in the United States. "We would like to see a U.S.
company involved at some point in TAPI."
He declined to name the companies.
The governments of Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and
India are aiming to sign by July 31 the TAPI pipeline deal.
(Reporting by Jo Winterbottom; Editing by Ranjit Gangadharan)