Nepal government urged to focus on bilateral ties

Kathmandu, Aug 14 (IANS) The opposition Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxists-Leninists) [CPN-UML] on Sunday urged the newly-installed government to focus on the implementation of bilateral agreements signed with China and India in the recent past.

Speaking in parliament, CPN-UML MP Keshav Baral asked the government to implement a number of bilateral agreements reached with neighbouring countries India and China during visits by then Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oli, Xinhua reported.

CPN-UML Chairman Oli resigned as Prime Minister earlier this month after his main ally CPN (Maoist-Centre) withdrew support. This paved the way for CPN (Maoist-Centre) chief Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ to ascend to the post of Premier with the support of the Nepali Congress — the single- largest group in the Nepali Parliament.

“The incumbent government should work toward enhancing bilateral relationship with neighbouring countries and for this, implementation of the bilateral agreements reached with China and India will be crucial. Our party strongly suggests to the government to implement those bilateral deals reached with both neighbours,” Baral said.

He also said that the government should work closely with China for the effective implementation of the Transit Transport Agreement signed with the northern neighbour.

“At the same time, the government should work toward implementing a deal with southern neighbour India to utilise the Visakhapatnam Port of India (for shipping in third-country imports),” he said.

Welcoming the government’s decision to send special envoys to China and India to strengthen bilateral ties, the opposition leader said the special envoys should seize the opportunity to discuss with the authorities in both countries the implementation of bilateral agreements.

Deputy Prime Minister Krishna Bahadur Mahara is leaving for China on Monday where he will hold high level-meetings with Chinese officials, according to his media advisor Triibhuwan Poudel.

Similarly, Deputy Prime Minister Bimalendra Nidhi will be travelling to India later during the week to hold talks with Indian authorities.

Deputy Prime Minister Mahara, who belongs to the CPN (Maoist-Centre) party, holds the finance portfolio in the Prachanda administration that came to power on August 3 while Deputy Prime Minister Nidhi, a Nepali Congress leader, is looking after the home affairs portfolio.

–IANS

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