KATHMANDU- Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Home Affairs, Narayan Kaji Shrestha, has said China is positive towards assisting Nepal in its development endeavours.
Talking to mediapersons at Tribhuvan International Airport upon his arrival from China after completing the five-day visit, he said he found Chinese officials positive in cooperating Nepal in its development in the days ahead. As he said, during the visit to the northern neighbour, he held extensive discussions with the Chinese side focusing on the strengthening of Nepal-China relations, promotion of bilateral trade and investment and development.
“We urged China to further increase its economic assistance to Nepal when we prioritise the goals for economic development and prosperity.” Chinese Vice- Premier He Lifeng and Communist Party of China, Sichuan Province Chief Wang Xiaohui assured of taking the proposal seriously, according to Shrestha. During a bilateral meeting with the Chinese Vice-Premier, discussions were held on promotion of bilateral trade, tourism, investment, connectivity, scaling of China’s assistance to Nepal and so on.
“During the meetings with Chinese officials, we thanked the government of China for its significant assistance to Nepal during each crisis such as earthquake, and COVID-19 pandemic,” he said acknowledging China as a major development partner of Nepal. The meeting also centered on the implementation of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) project. The Chinese side was acquisitive of Nepal’s preparedness to take benefits from projects under the BRI.
In response, we briefed them about Nepal’s plans and steps regarding the BRI. It may be noted that Nepal had signed the MoU in regard with the implementation of BRI. On the occasion, he held a talk with office bearers of the Sichuan Airlines on operating flights from Chengdu to new airports in Nepal. The Airlines was positive about the matter, he said. They have been asked to add Chengdu-Kathmandu flights, and commercially begin flights from Chengdu to Pokhara and Bhairahawa International Airports in Nepal, he said. “We have urged them to run a Chengdu-Kathmandu flight on a daily basis. On the matter, they have given a word. We have also asked them to start Chengdu-Pokhara and Chengdu-Bhairahawa direct commercial flights. On this, they said they were much position on a Chengdu-Pokhara flight.”
During his visit to the Republic of China, DPM Shrestha addressed the 19th Western China International Fair as a chief speaker. On the occasion, he urged Chinese investors to invest in Nepal as the country has adopted a policy of encouraging, promoting and protecting foreign investments by carrying out reforms in its investment system. Similarly, he delivered a speech on Nepal-China relations at the Sichuan University. During a meeting, he also urged the Sichuan Provincial Investment Group Co. Ltd. to increase their investment in Nepal. The DPM and his delegation also inspected Wenchuan County of Sichuan Province. The Country was rebuilt after being badly damaged by the 2008 8-magnitude earthquake. The DPM also inspected the Jinping Hydropower Project and Dujiangyan Irrigation System. He had embarked on his official visit to China on last Tuesday leading a seven-member delegation.