Pakistan believes that a "consensus" will emerge in the forthcoming tripartite meeting in Teheran to finalize the 7 billion U.S. dollars Iran-Pakistan-India (IPI) gas pipeline project, local newspaper Dawn quoted a senior official as saying Saturday.
"There is room for consensus on the report of the UK-based consultant Gaffiney Caline & Associates over its proposed gas tariff for the IPI project," Petroleum and Natural Resources Secretary Ahmad Waqar said.
He said Pakistan was expecting a tripartite meeting in early December in Teheran to further negotiate the issue of gas price to be offered by Iran to India and Pakistan.
"We are still hopeful as Pakistan has not rejected the gas tariff finalized by the consultant," he added.
He said Pakistan had also offered to Iran to arrange a tripartite meeting in Islamabad if the same could not be held in Teheran for any reason.
Waqar said since the IPI was a viable project, work on it could be started as soon as issues like framework agreement, detailed designing, route and configuration of the pipeline were sorted out.
He said about 1,400 km long pipeline was expected to be completed by 2010-11 because there was no problem of funding.
"A number of international investors are expected to finance the gas project," he said.