Nepal and China agree to sign long-term fuel deal

- ANIL GIRI, Kathmandu

Dec 26, 2015-

Nepal and China have agreed to sign a long-term petroleum agreement to import fuel from China.A consensus to this effect was reached during a meeting between Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs Kamal Thapa and his Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi in Beijing on Friday. DPM and Foreign Minister Thapa is on a weeklong visit (Dec 24-29) to China.

According to a member of the Nepali delegation, a two-member team from the Ministry of Commerce and Supplies and Nepali Oli Corporation has also reached Beijing to explore immediate possibilities of importing fuel. “By overcoming the harsh geographical and environmental conditions, for the first time, we have agreed to supply fuel to Nepal that it urgently needs. Foreign Minister Thapa and I have reached broad consensus [to this effect],” said Yang in a joint press meet in Beijing.

In response, Thapa said, “I am happy to note that the government of China has instructed the concerned petroleum export authority to be in touch [with the Nepali side] and discuss issues related to long-term fuel trade between the two countries.”

A press statement issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) stated that China has expressed its willingness to seriously examine Nepal’s proposals for the import of petroleum products from China and has advised the respective companies of the two countries to jointly examine the matters relating to price, transportation and other logistics. Earlier in the day, Finance Secretary Lok Darshan Regmi and Zhang Xiangchen, Vice Minister of Commerce of China, signed the Agreement on Economic and Technical Cooperation.

Under the agreement, China would make available 900 million RMB (approx Rs 14.75 billion) as grant assistance for the implementation of the projects of repair and maintenance of Araniko Highway and other projects of interconnection and interworking. This assistance was announced by the Chinese President during his meeting with his Nepalese counterpart in March 2015 in Boao, Hainan.

Thanking the Government of China for extending generous support to Nepal’s socioeconomic development over the years, DPM Thapa also appreciated the spontaneous and prompt support received from China in the aftermath of the April 25 earthquake of Nepal.

 

Chinese takeaway

  •   China will make available additional fuel to northern areas of           Nepal bordering Tibet Autonomous Region
  •  China to help upgrade and operationalise the existing border points and develop other border points to promote connectivity between the two countries
  •    The Chinese side will give priority to reopening of theTatopani  Zhangmu border point
  •    Intergovernmental mechanisms to advance negotiations on the proposals on free trade area, transit and Bilateral Investment Protection and Promotion Agreement (BIPPA)
  •    The Chinese side extends invitation to the prime minister of Nepal to visit China at an early date
  •    A high-level visit from China to Nepal next year on cards
  •    The Chinese side to take up agreed projects for post-disaster reconstruction as per its pledged assistance
  •   China lifts travel advisories to its citizens travelling to Nepal with immediate effect. Nepal decides to waive visa fee for Chinese visitors

 

 

Published: 26-12-2015 08:22

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