This year 2019 will be crucial for both Nepal and China: Chinese ambassador Hou
Kathmandu, Jan 30: Chinese ambassador to Nepal Hou Yanqi Wednesday viewed that the year 2019 would be a crucial one for both China and Nepal, and the bilateral relations between the two neighbours.
She said this welcoming the guests at a reception hosted by the Chinese embassy on the occasion of Chinese New Year.
The Chinese New year which this year is termed as the year of the pig fall falls on February 5.
"The year 2019 will be a crucial one for both China and Nepal, and our bilateral relations. China will celebrate the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China and hold the Second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation. The Nepali government will enter the second year of working for the development goal of “Prosperous Nepal, Happy Nepali”. China-Nepal relations are facing new development opportunities with the prospect for mutually beneficial cooperation brighter," ambassador Hou said at the reception.
Vice President Nanda Bahadur Pun (center, second row), Chinese ambassador to Nepal Hou Yanqi, (fifth from right) Speaker Krishna Bahadur Mahara (fourth from right) and National Assembly chairman Ganesh Timilsina (fourth from left) pose for a group photo with the Chinese cultural artists at the Chinese New Year reception hosted by the Chinese embassy, Kathmandu, Jan 30.
Vice-President Nanda Bahadur Pun, Home Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa, Speaker Krishna Bahadur Mahara, National Assembly Chairperson Ganesh Timilsina, Nepali Congress President Sher Bahadur Deuba among other ministers, leaders and diplomats in Kathmandu attended the reception with the cultural shows performed by the Song and Dance Troupe of Changdu city, Tibetan Autonomous Region of China.
"China and Nepal are friendly neighbors connected by mountains and rivers, friends sharing weal and woe, and partners of development cooperation. The year of 2018 was extraordinary for both China and Nepal. It was the 40th anniversary of reform and opening up and the 5th anniversary of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) proposed by Chinese President Xi Jinping. After four decades of relentless efforts, China has become the world’s second largest economy and achieved comprehensive economic and social development," she said.
The ambassador also talked about extraordinary achievements China made in 2018 including that China’s GDP exceeded 90 trillion yuan with a growth rate of 6.6 per cent, China launched Chang’e-4 spacecraft to land at the dark side of the moon, built the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge and successfully held the First China International Import Expo.
She said the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) had provided fresh impetus to the pragmatic cooperation between China and the countries along the BRI and regional economic development.
She also mentioned Nepal's achievement made in 2018 including successful conduction of all levels of elections, formation of stable government and starting 'a new journey focusing on economic development'.
"In 2018, with the joint efforts of both sides, the political, economic, people-to-people and cultural exchanges and cooperation between China and Nepal were pushed to a new height," she said adding that leaders of the two countries reached important consensus on promoting pragmatic cooperation in various fields and agreed to jointly build the trans-Himalayan Multi-Dimensional Connectivity Network during Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli's official visit to China.
In the 2017/2018 fiscal year of Nepal, the trade volume between the two countries was 1.767 billion US dollar, up 39.6% on a yearly basis. China has become Nepal’s biggest FDI country for three consecutive fiscal years. China-aid post-disaster reconstruction project for Nepal are in steady progress. In 2018, the number of Chinese tourists visiting Nepal exceeded 150,000 and China has become Nepal’s second largest source of foreign tourists, Chinese Ambassador Hou said.
Saying that she had long been engaged in China-Nepal relations and bearing friendly sentiments to the Nepali people, the ambassador said, "I am willing to work with all of you to implement the important agreements of the leaders of China and Nepal, promote exchanges and cooperation in various fields, and make unremitting efforts to build a China-Nepal community with a shared future and push China-Nepal comprehensive cooperative partnership featuring ever-lasting friendship to a new height".