March 23, 2012 / 8:01 AM / in 6 years

Two major U.S. oil cos interested in TAPI pipeline

NEW DELHI, March 23 (Reuters) - 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)

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