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2018 to be marked as high-level visit year : Minister Gyawali

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KATHMANDU — Minister for Foreign Affairs Pradip Gyawali has said that the year 2018 would be made the high-level visit year to solicit assistance for economic development.

Minister Gyawali, at an interaction programme in the capital city today, said that the high-level visit would be helpful to collect assistance for Nepal’s development and prosperity.

“Homework to invite Indian PM Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping would begin very soon. Chinese President Xi Jinping was invited in 2016 but his visit could not happen due to change in government. This time, high-level visits from the USA, the UK, Japan and other countries would be arranged,” Minister Gyawali said.

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He also added that the visit from Prime Minister of Pakistan held last month increased goodwill and was concentrated on holding the stalled SAARC Summit.

On the occasion, the Foreign Affairs Minister said that truce in Syria should be held as the children are falling victims to the war.

He also pledged to work to increase Nepal’s access to UN adding that our approach is not established in comparison to Nepal’s contribution to peace keeping mission. Minister Gyawali reiterated his commitment to not allow Nepal’s soil to be used against any nation.

The Foreign Affairs Minister said that Nepal’s relations with China and India would be based on our necessity instead of an alternative to one another.

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Sino-Nepal bilateral agreement implementation process begins

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KATHMANDU — The government has begun a process to implement energy cooperation agreement held with the government of China in a bid to attract more foreign investment and expand hydropower market in the country.

So far, Nepal has signed such agreements with India and Bangladesh as well. The process was begun following the Sino-Nepal agreement reached on 14 different areas during the Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli’s recent visit to China.

Bilateral agreements including railway construction in Nepal based on the trade and transit agreement, protocol concerning the utilisation of highways in Tibet Autonomous Region of China by Nepal for cargo transport was signed on the occasion.

Similarly, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on investment and cooperation on production capacity between the National Development and Reforms Commission of China and National Planning Commission of Nepal was signed during the visit.

Likewise, an agreement between the two governments was signed on reconstruction of the Friendship Bridge in Tatopani of Sindhupalchok and Rasuwagadhi of Rasuwa.

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Similarly, MoU was signed between the two countries on the establishment of a mechanism for facilitation on the implementation of China-Nepal Cooperation Programmes and Projects in Nepal.

In line with these agreements, Minister for Energy, Water Resources and Irrigation Barsha Man Pun has finalized the name to be represented from Nepal to the joint committee.

Energy secretary Anup Kumar Upadhyay has been nominated as the co-chair at the committee. There will be other seven members at the committee representing from electricity development department, Nepal Electricity Authority, and joint secretary from the Energy Ministry.

The committee meeting will be held in Kathmandu on September 27 and 28. The meeting will hold discussions on bilateral cooperation on energy sectors and progress on investment exchange in the areas among other issues.

The committee has been assigned to create environment conducive to welcome investment in the energy development from both government and private sectors.

Minister Pun said that the process has begun to form a joint committee and it will forward the process to implement the bilateral agreements in the energy development sectors.

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Agreements with Bangladesh also towards implementation

Similarly, the process of formation of two committees in line with the agreements signed between Nepal and Bangladesh has been forwarded.

Minister for Energy Pun following the Cabinet meeting on Sunday had made the decisions and picked the representatives to be in the Secretary-led Joint Executive Committee and Joint Technical Committee led by Join-Secretary.

The MoU regarding the energy cooperation between Nepal and Bangladesh provisions the formation of two committees, one led by Secretary of the Ministry of Energy, Water Resources and Irrigation and other Joint-Secretary of the same ministry.

Nepal and Bangladesh had inked an MoU on energy cooperation between the two countries on August 10. Minister Pun and Bangladeshi Minister of State for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid had signed the MoU.

Nepal signing MoU on BIMSTEC grid interconnections

Likewise, the government has decided to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) relating to the establishment of Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral, Economic and Technical Cooperation (BIMSTEC) grid interconnections. The decision to this effect was taken Sunday.

Nepal is expected to find an easier way to supply electricity generated here to India, Bangladesh and Myanmar once it signs the MoU.

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Issues relating to the construction of transmission lines and their operations have been incorporated in the MoU. Minister for Foreign Affairs, Pradeep Kumar Gyawali, has been given an authority to sign the document on behalf of the government of Nepal.

The member states of BIMSTEC, a sub- regional body comprising seven members in South Asia and South East Asia dependent on the Bay of Bengal, are meeting on coming August 30-31 in Kathmandu for the fourth Summit.

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