Peruvian President Ollanta Humala attended the ceremony, emphasising the job creation opportunities and the boost to industrial development the gas pipeline represents.

“This project will develop more than 40,000 jobs and could result in more than 2 per cent of national gross domestic product,” he said.

At the ceremony, Mr Humala, Peruvian Minister of Energy and Mines Jorge Merino Tafur, and Petroperu President Humberto Campodonico unveiled part of the pipeline, with the president later overseeing the layout of the project.

The expected route of the approximately 1,085 km pipeline – which is also known as the Gasoducto Andino del Sur – will start at the Camisea gas fields in Cusco, and then proceed south through the cities of Puno, Arequipa, Matarani, and Ilo, and possibly further on to Tacna.

Conduit Capital subsidiary Kuntur Transportadora de Gas, which was awarded the construction contract for the project in 2008, said construction is expected to take up to three years.