Putin’s uwillingness to go to Pakistan could have been caused by Islamabad’s refusal to give Gazprom a contract for construction of a branch of “Iran-India” gas pipeline

The summit of the leaders of Russia, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Tajikistan, planned for this week in Islamabad, has been postponed. Kommersant has learnt from the Pakistani sources, the Government has postponed the forum after the President of Russia, V. Putin, hadn’t confirmed his participation in it. For the first time for half a century the visit of the Russian President to Pakistan was supposed to give a start to the rebuilding of the relationships of Moscow and one of the key countries of the region. According to Kommersant, V. Putin’s turning away from going to Islamabad could have been caused by the fear of making the relationships with Delhi more complicated and the unwillingness of Islamabad to give Gazprom the contract for the construction of the Pakistani branch of the “India-Iran” gas pipeline. 
Many Pakistani sources as a priority version of the failed visit name the absence of the agreement upon the participation of Gazprom in the construction of the Pakistani branch of the “Iran-Pakistan-India” (IPI) gas pipeline. Gazprom has shown interest in this project long ago offering a partial financing of the construction in exchange for the stake in the IPI. Meanwhile during the recent visit of the delegation of Gazprom to Islamabad, the Pakistani party insisted on holding the tender, which, according to the local mass media, didn’t satisfy the guests. 
According to Kommersant, now the Russian party considers the opportunity of the visit of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, S. Lavrov, to Islamabad, which might take place this week. However, for the Pakistani party it is of particular importance that the visit of S. Lavrov was not the courtesy visit and settled the issue of Mr. Putin’s coming to Pakistan. Kommersant writes, www.centrasia.ru reports. 

Translated by Galiya Musabekova 

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