Nepal, India pledge to enhance transport connectivity

KATHMANDU, Feb. 19 (Xinhua) — Nepal and India, on Sunday, pledged to enhance cooperation on road, air, power grid and cross-border rail connectivity to promote people-to-people contacts, officials said.

The two sides agreed to speed up and initiate India-funded connectivity projects that include postal roads, cross-border railways and bridges at a bilateral meeting between Nepalese Physical Infrastructure Minister Ramesh Lekhak and Indian Union Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu in Kathmandu.

Prabhu stressed on enhancing connectivity between the two countries in multiple ways. “Nepal and India are like members of a same family. We have to work together to develop infrastructure projects so as to taking our connectivity to a new level,” he said.

The Indian minister expressed commitment to continue India’s support in Nepal’s socio-economic and infrastructure development.

On the occasion, the two ministers reviewed progress made in the implementation of two ongoing Nepal-India cross-border railway projects namely Jayanagar-Bijalpur-Bardibas and Jogbani-Biratnagar.

Nepalese Minister for Infrastructure Lekhak told media that steps will be initiated to facilitate development of three other cross-border rail-link projects namely Nepalgunj-Nepalgunj Road, Kakarbitta-New Jalpaiguri, Bhairawaha-Nautanwa.

Meanwhile, the Indian government announced on Sunday extending U.S.dollars 340 million soft loans to Nepal for the construction of a bridge and 15 postal highway projects in various districts of southern Nepal bordering India.

A Memorandum of Understanding in this regard was signed.

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