August 8, 2008

Pakistan Might Join Construction of Tajik Power Plant – Envoy

Excerpt from report by privately-owned Tajik news agency Asia- Plus

Dushanbe, 8 August: Pakistan acutely needs to import Central Asian electricity, the Pakistani ambassador extraordinary and plenipotentiary to Tajikistan, Khalid Usman Qaiser, told journalists today, commenting on an intergovernmental agreement on drawing up a project of the electricity transmission line Central Asia - South Asia - 1000 (Central Asia - South Asian - 1000 or CASA-1000) and further development of the Central Asian as well as South Asian electricity markets, which had been signed several days ago in Islamabad.

"Despite the fact that Pakistan has made major steps on the path of economic development, the country is still considered as developing and shortage of electricity hinders our economic growth," the ambassador said.

In reply to a question by the Asia-Plus news agency's correspondent regarding his country's possible participation in the consortium for completion of the Roghun hydroelectric power station, the Pakistani diplomat stressed that this issue could be resolved during the Shanghai Cooperation Organization's summit in August, which will be held in Dushanbe and during an official visit of the Russian president, Dmitriy Medvedev, to Tajikistan.

"We are waiting for Russia's decision regarding this issue: if Moscow scraps its plans on the construction of this facility on its own, and join an international consortium for completion of the Roghun hydroelectric power station, suggested by the Tajik government, I do not rule out Pakistan's participation in this project," the ambassador stressed.

[Passage omitted: background information]

Originally published by Asia-Plus news agency, Dushanbe, in Russian 1100 8 Aug 08.

(c) 2008 BBC Monitoring Central Asia. Provided by ProQuest Information and Learning. All rights Reserved.