Clashing interests: US threatens sanctions over Iran gas deal

Discussion in 'Americas' started by JayATL, Sep 18, 2011.

  1. JayATL

    JayATL Senior Member Senior Member

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    South Asian News Agency | Clashing interests: US threatens sanctions over Iran gas deal

    : (SANA)The United States has renewed its opposition to the multi-billion-dollar Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline, warning that Islamabad’s continuous pursuit of the plan may invoke US sanctions.
    The issue was raised during the fourth round of Pak-US strategic dialogue on energy that concluded in Islamabad on Thursday without any major tangible gains.

    Officials familiar with the development told The Express Tribune that the US Special Envoy for International Energy Affairs, Ambassador Carlos Pascual, ‘advised’ Islamabad to abandon its plan to import gas from Iran. He proposed instead that Pakistan pursue the TAPI project, a gas pipeline through Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India.


    Pakistan has reservations about the TAPI project due to security concerns about Afghanistan and unsettled issues relating to gas prices.The South Pars gas field in Iran is the largest in the world, meaning that its production costs for Iran are significantly cheaper than those for gas extracted from smaller fields in Central Asia, including the Caspian Sea fields to which Turkmenistan has access.

    )
    A US embassy spokesperson confirmed that Washington is concerned with Pakistan’s current direction, and the issue was raised in Ambassador Pascual’s meetings. “The proposed Pakistan-Iran pipeline, if built, could raise concerns under the Iran Sanctions Act. We are encouraging Pakistan to seek alternatives”, read a terse response from the US embassy.
    The renewed opposition from the US came just days after high level talks between Pakistan and Iran, where the two neighbours vowed to go ahead with the project that would bring its first gas flow by 2014.
    Water and Power Minister Naveed Qamar, who co-chaired the meeting, denied to The Express Tribune that such a discussion took place.

    However, another senior government official said that despite opposition from the US, Pakistan would not abandon the project, as an agreement has already been signed with Tehran.The two-day strategic talks ended without any significant developments, despite initial high hopes. The US seems reluctant to provide significant investment in Pakistan’s financially crippled power sector.

    A senior government official told The Express Tribune that the US special envoy has informed Pakistani authorities that it would be naïve to expect large support from Washington in the power sector until there is an institutional overhaul in the way the energy sector is regulated and managed.

    He said that the US has urged Pakistan to introduce major reforms by scrapping redundant policies and implementing new regulations. The latest US stance highlights the urgency to reform the sector that has stalled economic growth. Despite special cabinet committees, the government has failed to carry out reforms over the past three years.


    According to a US embassy handout, Ambassador Pascual reaffirmed the United States’ long-term commitment to working with Pakistan to establish a commercially viable and sustainable power sector. It further stated that, during the talks, Pakistan underscored its will to strengthen energy sector governance and efficiency, pursue regulatory reforms, improve financial management, and create a business climate that helps drive investment.

    The US, welcoming these plans which were elaborated in the Integrated Energy Sector Report, maintained that these measures will help develop a stronger foundation for investment. Both sides agreed to continue technical exchanges in areas that can help improve power availability.

    “As all Pakistanis know, reliable and affordable energy is critical to Pakistan’s prosperity,” said Ambassador Pascual. “Without it, businesses can’t operate and families can’t light and cool their homes. Pakistan’s future depends on power.”
    The US also welcomed Pakistan’s continued engagement with international financial institutions and the private sector to assess the feasibility of viable hydropower projects, a reference to the $12 billion Diamer Bhasha dam, for which the Asian Development Bank has agreed to provide funding.( Express Tribune)
     
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  3. KS

    KS Bye bye DFI Veteran Member

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    US - dont give them the nuke deal you gave us to drop out of it. LOL
     
  4. JayATL

    JayATL Senior Member Senior Member

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    I don't get what Pakistan is thinking here. On the surface of it looks like US interference , which it is, but if you look at it from unbias point of view Pakistan is being extremely naive in taking on risks with an Iran Pak pipeline.

    why?

    because lets see another piece of news today - where Saudi Arabia is leaning on Pakistan and its nuclear know how to help with Iran's threat it perceives. We all know that KSA is funding Pakistan heavily, we know they provide oil on loans to Pakistan and is important for PAk's economy. so how do they envision Iran is going to take such news?

    Okay let's forget that part if need be for second- then too why I'm continually baffled? Because of the sure political uncertainty in Iran makes this is naive to go into a relationship with Iran. mullahs run the country and not unlike Russia where we saw them cut off oil and gas pipelines to countries it supplied as hostage negotiations when they have " political issues " with those countries. Iran's mullah regime is all the worst volatile to rely on.

    The TAPI deal makes more sense for it originated from a " neutral country" so as to speak and cutting off Pak in future would mean cutting of India as well- as the the pipeline comes though Pak . Security is not a big concern because AF is going to have US in its region, India in its region and maybe the TAPI would give Pak more clout to be in the region too... besides they are laid well underground ( pipes laid). AF won't fall into the taliban regime ever again, we know that- now TAPI would make sure 4 countries were added to US interest in seeing it does fall into the taliban regime.
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2011
  5. KS

    KS Bye bye DFI Veteran Member

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    There is no difference between TAPI and IPI, infact there is no logic in any pipelione coming through Terrorism central 1 and Terror Central 2 (Af-Pak) where you can always find willing jihadis to blow the shit out of the pipeline.
     
  6. JayATL

    JayATL Senior Member Senior Member

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    then how come- not any have been blown in KSA mother of terror funding countries and a prime goal for terrorists? You making broad statements,,,, these pipelines are heavily guarded and have plenty of security. Like I said KSA infrastructure which is worse ( pipeline are above ground mostly) is a model of how to protect it.

    the depth at which these lines are laid --the only way to " blow it up" would mean you would have to be " regime in charge to get heavy equipment out to dig it up and blow it.
     
  7. KS

    KS Bye bye DFI Veteran Member

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    Dude here it will Non-state actors (with active collusion from the ISI) and if by KSA you Saudia then your analogy is completely wrong as the security situation there cannot even be compared to the volatile situation in Pak and afghanistan.
     
  8. thakur_ritesh

    thakur_ritesh Administrator Administrator

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    there is a world of difference between TAPI and IP/IPI/IPC/IPIC (whatever it might end up as) for both india and pakistan.

    TAPI: will pass through a'stan. the fears here for pakistan are similar to what india has with IPI. a'stan is hostile territory for pakistan as pakistan is for india. pakistan suspects the pipeline to be always under threat, as india suspects the same with IPI. india would any day be comfortable with TAPI because that brings in a balance where india alone doesnt end up being blackmailed because if pakistan sabotages the supplies in their territory on indian supplies, pakistanis then can be replied in kind in a'stan even if tomorrow taliban were to come and control most/all part of a'stan from where the pipeline would pass through.

    the other disadvantage for pakistan. the huge american involvement which is why they have been courting the russians on TAPI, pakistanis are trying to pit americans against the russians, and the bargain is pakistan will give access to russia to the arabian sea that russia has been looking for a very-very long time now and so one sees russia-pakistan relations cozy up to a certain extent, then there is also the afpak factor which bring the russians to pakistan. american involvement for pakistan means a huge sway on the pakistani energy resources and with the winter settling in on the US-pakistan relations, pakistanis are very vary of allowing any such thing, at least the establishment there.

    IP/IPI/IPC/IPIC: at the moment this is no more than a dream sold to the pakistani public to garner support by the politicians there and no more, for the moment that pipeline is going absolutely no more, which was the precise reason why india pretty much backed out though we keep the iranians engaged on the matter.

    US will at no cost let this pipeline happen, certainly not under the current iranian regime.
     
    Bangalorean and Pintu like this.
  9. JayATL

    JayATL Senior Member Senior Member

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    HUH? ISI will cut off pipeline that feeds its own people in Pak too ( if they accept TAPI) regardless- how exactly? with bunker busting bombs?


    and my KSA analagy - read up sometime how they have been targeted by AQ ...
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2011
  10. JayATL

    JayATL Senior Member Senior Member

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    please understand this TAPI is 4 countries. Afghanistan can't just turn off Pakistan because it will mean it will -

    A. lose its own source
    B. It will be turning of India too effectively since we are the end point going through PAK.

    Huh? where did you come up with such marsala bhai... Russia already enjoys Arabian sea because of India...besides who needs Arabian sea when Russia has free range because of India in the Indian ocean? and what do you think Chinese feel about Russia access to what has been promised to china? But more importantly where did you read such covert grand ( piss off India in the bargain) deal with Pak - Russia over Arabian sea?
     
  11. Pintu

    Pintu New Member

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    Ritesh, I think Russia can access the Arabian Sea from both through Iran and Pakistan, but irony is that to gain the access , they have to use Sistan Baluchistan in Iran or Baluchistan in Pakistan, and both the regions are restive for respective administrators , i.e. Baluchistan for Pakistan and sistan Baluchistan for Guardians for Islamic Revolution in Iran, and as Jundallah is active there, might there be a chance of set back in Russian interest, as Chinese already access the Arabian Sea in the form of port Guadwar , Russia might try to access it playing safe, in that case they access the same through India, without any trouble.

    Regards
     
  12. thakur_ritesh

    thakur_ritesh Administrator Administrator

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    why would someone engage the government of a country to sabotage something? the way is "non-state" actors, you pay money and there will be hundreds of thousands of such "non-state" actors to do the stuff for you.

    land route?!

    going through pakistan russia gets acess to the warm waters on this side through the land route, india cant do that because we are cut off from CAR.

    russia has huge energy/trade interests in this part of the world and further ahead and pakistan comes in handy.

    this will help you understand: http://lib.utexas.edu/maps/middle_east_and_asia/asia_southern_pol_2004.jpg
     
  13. KS

    KS Bye bye DFI Veteran Member

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    How about it cuts off after the nodes which feed Pakistan and before entering Indian territory.

    Secondly I dont like the idea of a pipeline coming thorough the territory of enemy. What will/can India do if Pakistan decides to turn off the taps for some stupid reason ? With those Paks you cannnot discount anything.


    I suggest you read the comparitive security situation in KSA and Pakistan.
     
  14. Virendra

    Virendra Moderator Moderator

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    It could be done if the Pak Govt. gets reluctant and there record isn't great. But this is no secret for our Govt. as well. India shouldn't enter a deal without enough legal cover. Terms of the deals have to be such that the Pakistani state is made to think twice before letting anything untoward happen to our supplies.
    Prima facie any line through Pakistan sure looks like a dangerous preposition. But India is increasingly energy hungry and there are limited options, you never know.

    Regards,
    Virendra
     
  15. thakur_ritesh

    thakur_ritesh Administrator Administrator

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    mate the increasing problem has been iran for russia. have you noticed on how tensions between the two have increased over a period of time where russia is being engaged more by EU and israel and that in a way is making iran feel a little isolated which eventually forced them to take action against the russians on the s-300 deal. russia the has been supporting sanctions along wit the US on iran though under an understanding with the US. iran has off late slowly and steadily drifted apart.
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2011
  16. JayATL

    JayATL Senior Member Senior Member

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    Okay- critical thinking yeah please? Cut of nodes that will cut of their own supply too? they are in desperate need for these energy resources and by cutting off at the Indian point they will risk losing their own source being turned off too ( breach of contract)- because its does not originate from them... This is a classic case on interdependence that guarantees nobody messes with each other - regardless of your gut feeling .

    Btw- don't forget we have water treaties with them too, where they are completely dependent on India for that resource- which means they will risk a drought if they do these methods you imagaine they would.

    Comparative study between two countries does not absolve the issue that AQ wants , has attempted to and continues to think, is of high importance about how to blow " above the ground" pipeline in KSA.
     
  17. KS

    KS Bye bye DFI Veteran Member

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    I said "with those Paks you cannot discount anything".

    Who said they think rationally when it comes to India.? If India is going to loose one eye Paks will be ready to loose both their eyes to ensure that.

    And the hate for India in Pakistan transcends AQ. Infact I think those arbi AQ wallahs dont have as much hate for India as those Pakistanis.
     
  18. thakur_ritesh

    thakur_ritesh Administrator Administrator

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    pakistan is in a bind with the americans all over them, take anything and the american foot prints are there.

    there are certain bargaining tools that a country uses and which is what pakistan is doing when it comes to a'stan and then they certainly want to use their proxies in taliban to further their interests in india/CAR as the americans ship out on most accounts.

    pakistan knows its limits, most certainly the current regime in power and the establishment, its just that they fed the anti-americanism to such great highs that in the past few months it became uncontrollable for them which i am sure as time passes by they will control through their usual propaganda machinery.

    IP not happening with the current iranian regime till the time some maniac does a coup, which is not what one sees in kayani.
     
  19. JayATL

    JayATL Senior Member Senior Member

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    Dude, you are trying to throw some absurd logic behind this meme you are pushing... there is zero chance of it happening. the russians have access to arabian sea! ( which is of no importance to tick off India and China given they have India to access it from). besides it off topic now... this whole russia will take over arabian sea is ill logical. :)
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2011
  20. JayATL

    JayATL Senior Member Senior Member

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    I asked for critical thinking and you are going on your gut feeling with "loose eye" theories . Besides the fact they will lose energy resources they desperately need - I also gave you the " water treaties " they risk. hence the debate ends with you...
     
  21. thakur_ritesh

    thakur_ritesh Administrator Administrator

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    russia wont take over the arabian sea, not even in their wildest of the dreams, they cant even dare to.

    russia needs access through land route and pakistan has offered them that, not something i am making up.

    Pakistan offers Russia access to “southern seas” - Pakistan offers Russia access to “southern seas” : Voice of Russia
     

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