How do you evaluate Nepal-China relations under your premiership?
Nepal and China are close neighbors. We are linked by the Himalayas. Friendship between the two countries is as high as the Himalayas. Some people think that Nepal and China are separated by the Himalayas. That’s not true. Himalayas have made use close and interlinked.
Nepal and China have always remained the closest friends. We had no problems with each other in the past. We have no problems today as well. We have only friendship. We support and respect each other. We have glorious history of past cooperation, mutual exchanges, exchanges of arts, artists, social relations and trade. There have been cross flow of artists, monks and travelers between the two countries for centuries.
We have had the best relation since history. After the establishment of New China in 1949, we established diplomatic relations in 1955. High level exchanges took place. BP Koirala, King Mahendra, Manmohan Adhikari and Madan Bhandari visited China. Similarly, Chinese Prime Minister Zhou Enlai and other prime ministers visited Nepal in different times. This relationship is getting more consolidated day by day.
How do you evaluate Chinese support and cooperation in Nepal’s infrastructure development?
China has supported us in various areas. China offered meaningful support to Nepal in the wake of devastating earthquakes of April and May. It has pledged huge aid to support post-earthquake reconstruction. It is involved in hydro-power and irrigation projects as well. It has done a lot for Nepal.
How have you contributed in developing good relations with immediate neighbors?
This is the first government after constitution promulgation. I have made efforts to develop friendly relations with neighbors. As regards China, my government wants to strengthen historical relation with it. Last year we celebrated 60th anniversary of diplomatic relations. Nepal firmly supports One China policy. We never allow our soil to be used against China. We are happy with China’s rapid growth and development and want to work together. Under my government high level exchanges are taking place.
Many Nepali delegations have visited China. We are expecting high level visits from China to Nepal soon. I want to visit China as soon as possible, perhaps by the last week of March. It might take time for me to visit China because China has Spring Festival at the moment, followed by National Congress of Communist Party of China.
It is said that you are keen on visiting India first, not China. What’s the truth?
There is no rule, and there should not be any, as to which country Nepal’s Prime Minister should visit first, China or India. This is no issue. If things go as planned, I might visit India about third week of February. There is no festival season in India. And this is the
right time for Indian leaders and government. Like I said, China is in festive mood at the moment. So there is possibility of visiting India
first. I also believe problems between India and Nepal will be resolved soon.
(Source: Asia Pacific Daily, Kathmandu bureau)