PM Oli to visit China in JunePrime Minister KP Sharma Oli is embarking on a state visit to China in June after presentation of the federal budget on May 29. PM Oli, who advocates a balanced and independent foreign policy and a good neighbourhood policy, visited India in April. As Oli tours China next month, agreements reached during his visit to Beijing in 2016 are expected to be expedited.
Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli is embarking on a state visit to China in June after presentation of the federal budget on May 29. PM Oli, who advocates a balanced and independent foreign policy and a good neighbourhood policy, visited India in April. As Oli tours China next month, agreements reached during his visit to Beijing in 2016 are expected to be expedited.
Both sides are working on the date of the visit said to be timed around the 18th summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) scheduled for June 9 and 10. Nepal, an observer at the SCO, will have lower-level participation in the summit.
“I’m going to China very soon,” said PM Oli, while informing Parliament about the outcome of the state visit of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi that concluded on Saturday.
Stating that the major goal of his China visit would be to strengthen bilateral relations, Oli said he seeks to broaden Nepal’s relations with other friendly nations.
To lay the ground for Oli’s Beijing visit, Foreign Minister Pradeep Gyawali met with senior Chinese officials in Beijing. Another key agenda of his meetings was expediting China-funded projects in Nepal and exploring new areas of cooperation.
“We are negotiating the date for the PM’s visit, likely after budget announcement, in June,” said Bishnu Rimal, chief adviser to PM Oli.
Talking to the Post last week, Foreign Minister Gyawali said the protocol for the Transit Transport Agreement will be signed during Oli’s visit.
On his return from a China visit on April 23, Minister Gyawali held a cross-ministerial meeting and took several decisions to expedite several pending works involving China, mostly those agreed to during then PM Oli’s earlier visit to the northern neighbour.
According to the decision, a taskforce led byathe secretary or joint-secretary at the Commerce Ministry, with
representatives from the finance, foreign, physical infrastructure, law and home ministries, will be formed
to give final touches to the protocol of the Transit and Transport Agreement with China.
The team will also hold talks with the Chinese side as preparation for signing of the protocol.
Another decision is on signing a memorandum of understanding on launching a joint feasibility study for the Nepal-China Free Trade Agreement. A taskforce to be led by the secretary or joint-secretary at the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Supplies is mandated to form a team of representatives from the ministries of Finance and Law and representatives from the private sector and other stakeholders to prepare a report and forward it for comments to the Chinese side.
Another decision is on signing one more MoU for formation of the joint coordination and implementation mechanism to monitor China-funded projects in Nepal. The mechanism led by the joint-secretary in charge of the North and East division of the Foreign Ministry and will draft the MoU in consultation with the Chinese side.
In a bid to sign a deal on building oil storage facilities in Nepal with Chinese assistance, search for land has to be over within a month.
The meeting also took decisions related to inclusion of Nepali projects under the Belt and Road Initiative of China, cross-border energy cooperation, and tourism, among others.