India, Nepal Set to Sign Agreement for Oil Pipeline: Ranjit Rae

Press Trust of India, (KATHMANDU, NEPAL) :  India and Nepal are set to sign an agreement for the construction of the much-touted cross border oil pipeline for supplying petroleum products to the land-locked Himalayan country, India’s Ambassador to Nepal Ranjit Rae said in Kathmandu on Friday.

Addressing an interaction programme organised by Reporters Club Nepal to mark the 69th Independence Day of India, Mr Rae said that if the two countries work together and exploit the natural resources at their disposal, economic prosperity and poverty alleviation can both be attained.

The Indian government had on Wednesday approved signing of the agreement to lay an oil pipeline from Raxaul in Bihar to Amlekhgunj in Nepal to supply petrol, diesel and Aviation Turbine Fuel and the re-engineering of Amlekhgunj Depot and allied facilities.

Indian Oil Corp (IOC) has agreed to foot the Rs. 200 crore cost for constructing the 41-km pipeline, about 39 km of which would lie in Nepal, in exchange for Nepal committing to buy products for at least 15 years.

Nepal depends on India for meeting all of its fuel requirements.

Mr Rae also underlined the need to implement a number of other agreements signed recently between the two countries, including Power Development Agreement and Infrastructure Development Agreement.

He said that Nepal needs to establish peace and stability for attaining economic prosperity and development, and India is ready to join hand with Nepal in its endeavours.

The Ambassador further said that India’s new government has adopted the policy of neighbourhood first, which is proven by the two visits paid by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Nepal, after assuming power last year.

The recent earthquakes in Nepal has brought the two neighbours even closer, he added.

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