MOSCOW, October 17. /TASS/. Islamabad has established contact with Moscow to discuss the import of liquified natural gas (LNG) from Russia to Pakistan, the country’s ambassador to Russia Shafqat Ali Khan said in an interview with TASS.
Speaking at the Russian Energy Week, the ambassador said that Pakistan had announced a tender for the supply of LNG, but had not received a single bid. When asked whether Islamabad is interested in buying LNG from Russia and what opportunities exist, the diplomat pointed out that Pakistan is an example of how instability in the energy market affects developing countries.
"We had this long-term contract with a company. They signed a contract with us at a fixed price. The price rose, and they decided to sell it to some other European country and they paid the fine [to us]. They even made a profit after paying the fine. So, you can imagine how much we suffered. A large part of our energy strategy rested on steady procurement of LNG," the ambassador told TASS.
"We have established contact with the Russian side, we are, of course, very much interested in procurement of LNG," he said. According to him, supplies of pipeline gas from Russia would become "a kind of transformative project," that could change the situation.
"But that will come later. Our immediate need is for LNG," he added.
The ambassador noted that so far no agreements on LNG supplies have been reached with Russia.
"We have just established contact on this," he said.
When asked whether Pakistan can buy gas from Russia through Iran if Moscow and Tehran agree on swap gas supplies, the diplomat said: "I am not an expert in this, but any such ideas will be welcome for us to study."
The ambassador also noted that Pakistan is now calling on all countries to pay attention to the gas issue.
"If the rich countries take away all the LNG, what is going to happen to us? The global energy market needs to be stabilized. You know sanctions are impacting us very badly," he said.