Turkmenistan to supply Afghanistan
with free electricity
Jul 06, 2007 - Asia Pulse
Turkmenistan has promised to supply
electricity worth US$300,000 to energy-starved Afghanistan,
with the neighbours agreeing to reinforce cooperation
in different fields including trade, commerce, diplomacy
The electricity will be supplied free
of cost to the war-battered country as a goodwill
gesture, Turkmen and Afghan presidents told a joint
news conference following a formal meeting here on
Gurbanguli Berdymukhamedov, charactersing
his talks with Hamid Karzai as very useful and productive,
said the two countries enjoyed good trade and cultural
ties. He hoped the bilateral relationship would grow
further with time.
His government would lay a railway line
linking two dry ports - Torghundi and Aqeena in Afghanistan's
Herat and Faryab provinces - with Turkmenistan, Berdymukhamedov
The Turkmen leader said they also discussed
a long-delayed 1700 kilometre gas pipeline - traversing
Herat, Farah, Helmand and Kandahar provinces in Afghanistan
before reaching Pakistan.
Under a memorandum of understanding
signed between the three countries on July 4, 2006,
Turkmenistan agreed to supply Pakistan through Afghanistan
with 3.2 billion cubic feet of gas on a daily basis
for a period of 30 years.
The trilateral pipeline project, when
executed, is expected to earn cash-strapped Afghanistan
US$300 million annually in transit fees and throw
up employment opportunities.
Lauding Turkmenistan's assistance, Karzai
invited his counterpart to visit Afghanistan and said
the exchange of high-level trips would go a long way
in boosting links between the two Central Asian nations.
The two sides signed a protocol on bilateral
consultations between Afghan and Turkmen foreign ministries
and a memorandum of understanding on transit trade
The visiting dignitary will place a
floral wreath at the mausoleum of former Turkmen president
Safar Murad Niazov, go to a historical museum in Ashgabat,
receive a honourary professorial degree from the Turkmenistan
University and address its students.
An 80-member delegation including cabinet
ministers, legislators and entrepreneurs are accompanying
Karzai on the tour largely focused on Afghan-Turkmen
(Pajhwok Afghan News)