Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli today said achievements of his official visit to China exceeded objectives.
He said the major objectives of his trip were: to boost goodwill between the two countries; prepare modality for implementation of past agreements; convey to the Chinese side the government’s priorities; and to forge cooperation with the Chinese government on the national agenda of economic prosperity.
“I believe achievements of this visit have exceeded the objectives,” Oli said in a press note issued after his return from China this morning upon completion of his six-day visit to the northern neighbour.
Oli and his delegation were welcomed at Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu by Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Ishwar Pokhrel and Nepal Communist Party (NCP) senior leader Madhav Kumar Nepal, among others. Oli had left for China on June 19.
The high-level meetings and discussions have boosted friendship, mutual trust and understanding and further strengthened political relations. Interactions between the academia and business communities of both countries have further reinforced people-to-people relations, according to the press note read out at TIA.
Oli said the Chinese government expressed commitment to extend support to Nepal’s endeavours to achieve political stability, social harmony and economic development.
Oli held delegation-level talks with his Chinese counterpart Li and met Chinese President Xi Jinping and Chair of Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress Li Zhanshu. He also met Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank President Jin Liqun. Oli also met provincial leaders in Tibet.
Oli said the agreements and understandings would broaden Nepal-China economic cooperation.
Nepal and China signed 14 bilateral agreements, MoUs and Letters of Exchange, including the MoU on Cooperation in Railway Projects and Protocol to the Unitisation of Highways in Tibet and Nepal for Cargo Transport.
On railway cooperation, he said pre-feasibility study of the Kerung-Rasuwagadi-Kathmandu railway would be over soon and other processes would move ahead. “It is the most important understanding in the history of bilateral assistance,” he said. The PM, however, said as the terrain on the Nepali side was more difficult than on the Tibetan plateau, necessary studies would take some time.
“This is also an experiment in development of new technology in railway connectivity, construction and service operation. So we need to work with maturity rather than haste,” the PM said. “Chinese President Xi Jinping shared his vision of taking Chinese railway to Nepal during talks. This was included in the joint statement. So this will happen sooner than later.”
On the question of funding, Oli said whoever had money would invest, but added that the funding aspect would be known only after completing viability and feasibility studies. On the protocol to transit transport agreement, Oli said an agreement would be reached within July.
Oli also said Chinese President Xi would visit Nepal at an appropriate time and the date would be fixed as per mutual convenience.