PM's visit to bolster ties
By Gopal Khanal
Kathmandu, May 9: Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli will embark on a formal visit to two Southeast Asian countries-Vietnam and Cambodia- on Thursday.
Prime Minister Oli’s visit has been fixed in order to expand Nepal's foreign relations to small and developing countries but not limiting only to neighbouring and traditional power states.
The Prime Minister has adopted a policy to maintain ties with neighbouring countries, power nations, including America and others on the basis on ‘sovereign equality’.
Accordingly, he has already paid state visits to neighbouring countries India and China and registered an effective presence in the General Assembly of United nations.
Similarly, Oli is the first Nepali Prime Minister who has participated in the World Economic Forum convened in Davos of Switzerland.
The invitation of the Forum of capitalist countries to Communist Prime Minister Oli was recognition of him and his briefing about Nepal’s democratic development at the Forum made him popular among the world community.
His visit has been scheduled to effectively continue bilateral relations with the two ASEAN nations that are achieving a fast economic development goal but have lagged behind in terms of their foreign relations.
Coincidently, the two countries- Vietnam and Cambodia, led by Communist governments, have socialist economy.
Oli is starting his five-day visit to Vietnam on the invitation of its Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc, to be followed by the three-day visit to Cambodia that would be on the invitation of its Prime Minister Hun Sen.
During his Vietnam visit, Oli will hold a delegate-level bilateral talks with his counterpart, besides his another high-level meeting with chairperson of National Assembly of Vietnam.
“The government’s policy is to coordinate with all types of countries whether big, small, developed or developing attaching Nepal’s development on top priority. This visit is in line with the policy,” said the PM’s Foreign Affairs Advisor Dr. Rajan Bhattarai, talking to The Rising Nepal.
Oli is slated to address International Day of Bhaishak, attended by a large number of Buddhist monks from across the world, including Nepal, to be held in Henan province of Vietnam.
High level political leaders, including Indian vice-president Venkaiah Naidu, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Bin Mohamad, will also participate in the conference.
Similarly, Prime Minister Oli was invited by his Cambodian counterpart Hun Sen. The Cambodian PM had visited Nepal a few months ago.
During Oli’s Cambodia visit from May 13 to May 15, bilateral discussions will be held to immediately implement the past understandings made between the two countries.
Similarly, the bilateral talks will also centre on attracting Buddhist tourists to Lumbini, the birthplace of Lord Buddha.