The economic remake of Afghanistan, the central piece of which is the TAPI Corridor, cannot take place without solid and consistent financial support.
The support doesn’t just comprise of monetary resources. It is perhaps even more important to make sure that the resources are spent in a transparent and most efficient manner.
ADB (Asian Development Bank) is the lead financial institution that is supporting the TAPI Gas pipeline.
Here is the text of the speech of C. C. Yu, the ADB country director in Turkmenistan, at the briefing held on 16 January 2021:
Your Excellency Vice Chairman and Minister Meredov, distinguished guests, dear participants,
It’s my great pleasure to join the panel to mark the commissioning of several key infrastructure projects involving railway, communication, and power transmission lines linking Turkmenistan and Afghanistan. I want to congratulate the Government of Turkmenistan for taking the initiative in constructing the facilities using its own resources. The improved connectivity between the two countries will lead to joint prosperity which will in turn contribute to peace and security for the region.
The Asian Development Bank has been supporting Turkmenistan for 20 years in strive for developing its economy and improving the quality of life for its great people. ADB’s current Country Partnership Strategy aims to support the government to diversify its economy and promote Turkmenistan as a hub for regional cooperation by constructing key transport corridors, power transmission network, and natural gas pipelines. Of many projects which we are currently preparing in collaboration with Turkmenistan, no other project symbolizes the type of long-term commitment we have had to Turkmenistan’s development than TAPI, the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India natural gas pipelines project. We have been providing various forms of technical, legal, and financial support for this multibillion dollar, highly complex project for nearly two decades, and we are absolutely determined to support it till its successful completion. In the power sector, we have approved a $500 million Power Grid Strengthening Project which is currently being implemented and will strengthen the aging power grid and contribute to energy trade with neighboring countries including Afghanistan. Another key infrastructure sector that ADB is supporting is railway sector. We have completed the North-South Railway Modernization Project and are currently working with the Railway Agency in preparing another railway project the East-West Railway Modernization Project.
Turkmenistan is an active and important member of the Central Asian Regional Economic Collaboration (CAREC) forum supported by ADB and other development partners. In 2018, Turkmenistan successfully hosted its annual meeting in Ashgabat. Among other initiatives, CAREC supports constructing economic corridors and power interconnections including TUTAP and TAP linking the region including Turkmenistan and Afghanistan.
Besides the infrastructure initiatives mentioned above, we are also working on projects supporting health, banking, small and medium enterprises, sound macroeconomic management, and of course fighting the COVID pandemic.
To conclude, I would like to reiterate ADB’s long-term commitment to our strong partnership with Turkmenistan in developing Turkmenistan and the region to achieve peace and prosperity. /// nCa, 22 January 2021