Nepal, China sign MoU on energy cooperation under B&R Initiative

International Cooperation
Nepal and China signed a Memorandum of Understanding on their energy cooperation in Beijing on Thursday.

China.org.cnUpdated: September 8, 2017

Nepal and China signed a Memorandum of Understanding on their energy cooperation in Beijing on Thursday.

Nepal and China sign the Memorandum on Energy Cooperation in Beijing, Sept. 7, 2017. [Photo by Cui Can/China.org.cn]

Speaking at a reception at the Nepalese Embassy two days earlier, visiting Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Krishna Bahadur Mahara said Nepal and China had witnessed continuous cooperation under the Belt and Road Initiative in recent years.

Prior to the signing, Mahara held talks with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, during which they exchanged views on further expanding cooperation.

According to an embassy press release, Mahara expressed the conviction that, being a close neighbor, Nepal's development needs and aspirations would be prioritized and given due place under the Belt and Road Initiative.

"Nepal-China cooperation has been flourishing in multiple directions in recent years, " he said.

Last March, Nepal signed an MoU to become a part of the Belt and Road Initiative, first proposed by China in 2013 aiming to build a trade and infrastructure network connecting Asia with Europe and Africa along ancient trade routes.

Last year, agreement was reached on grant assistance totaling 1 billion yuan from China for reconstruction and rehabilitation of earthquake damaged facilities in Nepal. And, more recently, a Memorandum on the Development of a Cross Border Economic Zone was also signed to promote the construction of such a facility along the Nepal-China border.

Nepalese Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Krishna Bahadur Mahara speak at a reception at the Embassy of Nepal in Beijing, Sept. 7, 2017. [Photo by Cui Can/China.org.cn]

"Chinese investors have been showing keen interest in investing in Nepal and the number of Chinese tourists visiting Nepal is also increasing rapidly," said Mahara, adding that the two sides should capitalize on the new opportunities created by the B&R Initiative and enhance mutual cooperation in the fields of developing cross-border connectivity, building physical infrastructure, promoting trade, tourism, investment people-people relations.

In his speech, the Nepalese minister expressed his confidence that the latest understanding would pave the way for expanding cooperation between the respective agencies of the two countries in the development of power generation projects and joint investment in the power grid, including a feasibility study on cross-border power grid interconnection.

The Nepalese government was very encouraged by Chinese assurances of continuing cooperation in common developmental efforts, he said.

Mahara said Nepal had never allowed any anti-Chinese activities on its soil in the past, and would never allow any activity inimical to Chinese interests in the future.

When talking about the great transformation taking place in Nepal, the minister showed his appreciation for the support of the international community, especially neighboring countries, for the democratic path Nepal had chosen.

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