President shelves visit to Turkmenistan


ISLAMABAD: President Mamnoon Hussain has postponed a scheduled official visit to Turkmenistan because Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is also going to the country this month to attend the groundbreaking ceremony of the much-awaited Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (Tapi) gas pipeline project.

A source in the presidency told Dawn that the president was scheduled to visit Turkmenistan on Dec 11, to attend an international conference after which bilateral talks were to be held between the two sides. But, the visit has been postponed because the prime minister is going to Turkmenistan on Dec 19.

According to reports, the 1,735km pipeline will supply up to 33 billion cubic metres of gas a year from Turkmenistan to Afghan­istan, Pakistan, and India over the next 30 years.