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Bibeksheel Sajha abstains from president and vice-president election

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KATHMANDU — The Bibeksheel Sajha Party has decided to not take part in the elections of a new President and Vice President, the party said in a statement.

In a press statement released today, Bibeksheel’s State Assembly parliamentary party province 3 leader Ramesh Poudyal said,”The Bibeksheel Sajha is in favour of a directly elected prime minister and a constitutional president. In the parliamentary practice, the role of constitutional president should be neutral, impartial and above the partisan interests. But, some of the decisions had crossed the jurisdictions.”

The party has three members elected under the proportional representation system in Province 3’s State Assembly.

Earlier on Monday, the party handed the rights to take a decision on the matter to the province-level leadership, deciding not take part in the both elections.

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The presidential election is underway at the New Baneshwor-based Federal Parliament Building and two candidates–incumbent President Bidya Devi Bhandari and Nepali Congress leader Kumari Laxmi Rai–are in the race for the post. The election that began at 10:00 am will conclude at 3:00 pm.

Meanwhile, Rastriya Prajatantra Party ( RPP) led by Kamal Thapa has announced its support for presidential candidate Bidya Devi Bhandari.

In a press statement today, party spokesperson Bhuwan Pathak said the party decided to vote in favour of the presidential election. Earlier, the CPN (UML) agreed to repeat incumbent Bhandari as the party’s candidate for the post.

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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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