KATHMANDU, April 7: Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi reviewed the entire spectrum of the Indo-Nepal bilateral relation between the two countries. PM Oli is on his three-day state visit to India at the invitation of his Indian counterpart Modi.
Here is the full lesson of the joint statement of the two prime ministers, following the delegation level talks in New Delhi.
- The Rt. Hon’ble Mr. K.P. Sharma Oli, Prime Minister of Nepal, is on a State visit to India from April 6-8, 2018, at the invitation of the Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi.
On April 7, 2018, the two Prime Ministers comprehensively reviewed the entire spectrum of multifaceted ties between the two countries. They welcomed the growing partnership between the two governments, private sector and at the people’s level. The two Prime Ministers resolved to work together to take bilateral relations to newer heights on the basis of equality, mutual trust, respect and benefit.
Recalling that the close and friendly India-Nepal relations are built on the strong foundation of shared historical and cultural links and close people to people contacts, the two Prime Ministers underscored the importance of regular high-level political exchanges in cementing bilateral ties.
Prime Minister Oli stated that his government attaches high importance to further strengthening friendly relations with India. He expressed the desire of the Government of Nepal to develop bilateral relations in a way so as to benefit from India’s progress and prosperity for economic transformation and development. Prime Minister Modi assured Prime Minister Oli that India remains committed to strengthening its partnership with Nepal as per the priorities of the Government of Nepal.
Prime Minister Modi stated that Government of India’s vision of ‘Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas’ is a guiding framework for India’s engagement with its neighbours for a shared vision of inclusive development and prosperity. Prime Minister Oli stated that after the landmark political transformation, his Government has given priority to economic transformation with the motto ‘Samriddha Nepal Sukhi Nepali’. Prime Minister Modi congratulated the people and the Government of Nepal for successful conduct of local level, federal parliament and first-ever provincial elections in Nepal and appreciated their vision for stability, and development.
The two Prime Ministers inaugurated the Integrated Check Post at Birgunj in Nepal. They hoped that its early operationalization will enhance cross-border trade and transit of goods and movement of people bringing greater opportunities for shared growth and development.
The two Prime Ministers witnessed the ground breaking ceremony of the Motihari-Amlekhgunj cross-border petroleum products pipeline at Motihari, India.
The two Prime Ministers underlined the need for expeditious implementation of bilateral projects in Nepal, and to reinvigorate the existing bilateral mechanisms to promote cooperative agenda across diverse spheres.
Three separate joint statements on the following key areas of mutual interest were issued today:
- India-Nepal: New Partnership in Agriculture
- Expanding Rail Linkages: Connecting Raxaul in India to Kathmandu in Nepal
- New Connectivity between India and Nepal through Inland Waterways
NEW PARTNERSHIP IN AGRICULTURE
- Noting the critical importance and contribution of agriculture and allied sectors to their respective economies, the Prime Ministers of India and Nepal reaffirmed their resolve to promote cooperation in agricultural science and technology, agricultural production and agro-processing in line with the Memorandum of Understanding between the two countries for mutual benefit of farmers, consumers, scientific community as well as the private sector.
- The two Prime Ministers agreed to give fresh momentum to bilateral cooperation in the agricultural sector and decided to launch a New Partnership in Agriculture.The Partnership will be anchored by the Ministers for Agriculture of the two countries and will focus on collaborative projects in agricultural research & development, education, training and scholarships; strengthening of supply and value chain; climate resilience; research in seed technology; soil health; strengthening infrastructure of plant protection laboratories; research in indigenous genetic resources; animal husbandry; veterinary research and development facilities; agro forestry; bio pesticides, bio fertilizers; cooperative farming, and promoting exchanges between the Indian Council for Agricultural Research (ICAR) and the Nepal Agricultural Research Council (NARC).
- The two sides will organize the first meeting of the Partnership at an early date to concretize priority areas of mutual interest and to develop a work plan for joint implementation. The Indian side announced a pilot project on organic farming and soil health monitoring for implementation in Nepal.
CONNECTING RAXAUL IN INDIA TO KATHMANDU IN NEPAL
- With the objective of expanding connectivity to enhance people-to-people linkages and promote economic growth and development, the Prime Ministers of India and Nepal agreed to construct a new electrified rail line, with India’s financial support, connecting the border city of Raxaul in India to Kathmandu in Nepal. As a first step, it was agreed that Government of India would, in consultation with the Government of Nepal, carry out preparatory survey work within one year, and the two sides would finalize the implementation and funding modalities of the project based on the Detailed Project Report. The Prime Minister of Nepal assured that the Government of Nepal will extend full cooperation for early completion of the requisite surveys for the new rail line.
- The two Prime Ministers appreciated the progress made in the implementation of Phase-I of the India-Nepal cross-border rail link projects. The two leaders noted that the stretch of railway lines from Jayanagar to Janakpur/Kurtha and from Jogbani to Biratnagar Custom Yard will be completed in 2018, and that work on the remaining stretch of the ongoing rail link projects: (a) Jayanagar-Bijalpura-Bardibas and (b) Jogbani-Biratnagar, will be taken forward on priority. India expressed appreciation for Nepal’s commitment to expeditiously resolve all outstanding issues, including land availability, for the ongoing rail link projects.
- The two Prime Ministers noted with appreciation that the India-Nepal Joint Working Group has been meeting regularly to discuss issues relating to operation of train services on the ongoing cross-border rail link projects. It was agreed that the JWG would identify requirements for operating train services on these cross-border rail links, and finalize the bilateral modalities expeditiously.
- The two leaders emphasized the importance of implementing the remaining three links under Phase-II of the India-Nepal cross-border rail link projects: (i) New Jalpaiguri-Kakarbhitta, (b) Nautanwa-Bhairahawa, and (c) Nepalgunj Road-Nepalgunj. Welcoming the ongoing Final Location Survey of the three links, the two leaders agreed to expedite completion of the remaining survey work.
- The Prime Ministers of India and Nepal recognised the untapped potential of inland waterways to contribute towards overall economic development of the region. Taking cognizance of their geographies and noting the development of inland waterways in both countries, the two Prime Ministers took the landmark decision to develop the inland waterways for the movement of cargo, within the framework of trade and transit arrangements, providing additional access to sea for Nepal. This new initiative would enable cost effective and efficient movement of cargo. The Prime Minister of Nepal noted the enormous impact the additional connectivity would have on the growth of business and economy of Nepal.
- To facilitate the movement of traffic-in-transit, the two leaders directed their respective officials to formulate and mutually agree upon the requisite procedures and modalities for including inland waterways as an additional means of transport in the Protocol to the Treaty of Transit between India and Nepal.
10. The two Prime Ministers agreed that the visit has imparted new dynamism to the multifaceted partnership between the two countries.
11. Prime Minister Oli thanked Prime Minister Modi for the invitation and warm hospitality extended to him and his delegation.
12. Prime Minister Oli extended an invitation to Prime Minister Modi to pay an early visit to Nepal. Prime Minister Modi accepted the invitation; dates would be finalized through diplomatic channels.