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China, Pakistan open pipeline talks

China, Pakistan open pipeline talks

Pakistan and China will start talks this week about laying a crude oil pipeline from Gwadar Port in Pakistan to western China.

A Chinese team is expected in Islamabad Thursday.

Gwadar  is a free trade port city on the southwestern Arabian Sea coastline of Pakistan in Balochistan province.

Pakistan is expected to hand over control of the port to Beijing for further development and operation. China financed most of the construction of the port and provided labor and expertise.

Chinese companies have invested about $15 billion into Baloch projects.

Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was in Beijing in July and discussed the idea of constructing an oil pipeline from Gwadar Port to western China after China takes control of the port.

Last week he approved in principle the proposed alignment of the Pakistan-China trade corridor, Pakistan officials said, subject to agreement on costs and other terms.

Iran has also announced plans to build an oil refinery with oil production capacity of 400,000 barrels per day at Gwadar Port, according to Pakistan’s Express Tribune.

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