Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh said Wednesday he had no hope of exporting gas to Pakistan because financing is not available to finish building a pipeline, state news agency IRNA reported.
“Given the current conditions, we do not have hope for exporting gas to Pakistan,” Zanganeh was quoted as saying.
Earlier this month, Pakistani Petroleum Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi asked Iran for $2 billion (1.45 billion euros) to build its side of a controversial gas pipeline that has drawn threats of US sanctions.
Under those conditions, “it is seems improbable to export gas” to Pakistan Zanganeh added.
The Iranian side of the $7.5-billion project is almost complete, but Pakistan has run into repeated problems paying for the 780 kilometre (485 mile) section to be built on its side of the border.
Iran currently produces around 600 million cubic metres (21.2 billion cubic feet) of gas per day, almost all of which is consumed domestically. Its only foreign client is Turkey, which buys about 30 million cubic metres per day.
Spooked by fears of US sanctions and lack of money supply, the Pakistanis have so far dragged their feet on completing the project on their side.