Published: Wed, March 07, 2018
Global | By Craig Ferguson

PM Abbasi meets Nepalese Prez, former PM Dahal

PM Abbasi meets Nepalese Prez, former PM Dahal

Experts said that the visit of Pakistan Prime Minister is an indication of the fact that Nepal is looking for new partners, not content with its traditional ties with India.

Abbasi also paid a courtesy call on President Bidya Devi Bhandari and addressed a programme organised by the SAARC Secretariat.

The prime minister said SAARC had enormous potential for strengthening the economies of the member Countries and to promote collaboration in various areas of mutual significance.

Towards enhancing bilateral trade and regional cooperation, the two leaders discussed reactivation of Pakistan Nepal Joint Economic Commission and the Joint Business Council. The former Nepalese PM also mentioned that the visit of PM Abbasi would provide an opportunity to further expand and strengthen bilateral relations across all areas of mutual interest.

Prachanda said the meeting also stressed the need of initiative from all member-states to revitalise the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC).

He said holding of SAARC summits meant renewing impetus amongst the member states and therefore was significant.

Welcoming Abbasi's visit to the Himalayan nation, a delegation of Nepali CEOs and journalists from leading Nepali media houses called on the Pakistani premier for his update on key matters like China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) highlighting Nepal's participation in the One Belt-One Road (OBOR) project, among others. On the occasion, matters relating to various aspects of Nepal-Pakistan bilateral relations and mutual interests were discussed, according to the Office of President.

He also noted that SAARC had huge potential for strengthening the economies of the member countries and promoting collaboration in various areas of mutual significance.

The Pakistani PM also talked about stepping up bilateral ties with Nepal including stepping up connectivity, exchange between parliamentarians and apprising Kathmandu of the "fight against terrorism" Pakistan is undertaking at 'greater cost'.

He also extended invitation to Oli to visit Pakistan.

Mr Sial, who belongs to Pakistan's Foreign Service and was appointed secretary general of Saarc in 2017, briefed the prime minister on the activities of the organisation.

Welcoming Abbasi, the Government of Nepal also accorded a special guard of honor to him at Nepal's Army Pavilion, making him the first leader to receive such honor from Nepal.

Prime Minister Oli said Nepal had a fruitful relationship with Pakistan and expressed gratitude for providing assistance to the victims of Nepal's massive 2015 natural disaster.

The prime minister said as the Host of next SAARC Summit, Pakistan looked forward to convening the Summit at an early date, and assured that the Country would play a positive role in further strengthening regional cooperation.

Former premier Nawaz Sharif had visited Nepal to attend the 18th SAARC Summit in 2014.

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