Beijing is interested in a trans-Himalayan oil pipeline proposed by Pakistan early this year, a Pakistan embassy official said on Monday.
The pipeline is designed to link Pakistan's Gwadar Port with China's Xinjiang, passing through the Himalayas and transporting Middle Eastern crude to China.
"At the moment it is just an idea that we have brought forward, but the Chinese side have said that they are interested," said Naeem Khan, a commercial and economic counselor at the Pakistani embassy in Beijing.
"It would be part of a larger trade corridor. We have already agreed to upgrade the Karakoram highway [between the two countries] and the pipeline would go in tandem with that," the counselor was quoted by Pakistan's Business Recorder as saying.
The proposal for such an oil pipeline was first raised during Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf's official visit to Beijing in late February.
The Chinese government is concerned about the security risks inherent in the fact that the bulk of its oil imports must pass through the narrow Malacca Straits, and if the pipeline were to be built, it would provide an alternative route. China has also been considering pipelines crossing Vietnam and Burma.
Saturday, October 28, 2006
Not surprisingly, China likes non-sea lane methods of getting oil delivered. One such idea is set out here: