Govt asked to give priority to Pak-Iran gas pipeline


LAHORE: Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Punjab has urged the federal government of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) to give priority to the Pak-Iran Gas Pipeline Project and immediately build it.
Commenting on the statement of the adviser to the PM on foreign affairs the other day in the House, declaring Pakistan-Iran pipeline still a priority of the incumbent government, PPP Punjab President Mian Manzoor Ahmed Wattoo urged the government to pursue the building of the pipeline on a proactive basis, substantiating its commitment without caring for foreign pressure.
He said in a statement issued on Wednesday that it was the landmark project that was vigorously pursued by former president Asif Ali Zardari who undertook a number of visits to the brotherly country Iran to translate the visionary project into reality.
He observed that Zardari took keen interest in the project and due to his assiduous efforts the project saw the light of the day, as both the presidents of Iran and Pakistan jointly inaugurated it in a befitting manner last year.
He maintained that the project offered the quickest solution to the energy problems of the country at competitive rates because the flow of the gas in the pipeline could have been enough to produce more than 2,000MW by power plants, enough to provide uninterrupted supply of energy to the industrial sector.
He added that if the project was followed with the same enthusiasm, Pakistan would have been getting the gas by the end of this year.
Wattoo said that the expression of determination of priority by the government was not enough unless substantive steps were taken regarding the building of the pipeline, which was a strategic project intertwined with immense economic and diplomatic dividends in favour of the country.
He pointed out that the ducking of the project preceded by lackadaisical attitude of the government was the manifestation of capitulation that reflected poorly on the foreign policy of the country as well.
He reiterated that the PPP leadership would be fully behind the government if it dared to confront the pressure generated by the internal and external forces in the way of the Iran-Pakistan Gas Pipeline Project, which was critical for running the wheel of the economy.
He observed that the pursuit of the project would also lead to quantum jump in improving our relations with the brotherly neighbouring country.

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