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President Xi’s Nepal visit: top priority for infrastructure

Published Date : October 10, 2019

            Kathmandu, Oct 10 : Key agreement and memorandum of understanding regarding physical infrastructure sector making positive impact on country’s economic development would be signed during Chinese president Xi Jinping’s state visit to Nepal.

            Both the countries have given acceleration to the preparations of the visit after the announcement of two-day state visit of Chinese President Xi. The Chinese President is paying state visit to Nepal commencing from October 12.

            At a discussion organised at the official residence of the Prime Minister today, Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli said that discussion would be held regarding economic partnership with China keeping the matter of national interest at the centre, adding that discussion would also be held about the investment model of the construction of Kerung-Kathmandu railway.

            The government has put road, infrastructure and railway at the top priority keeping the national interest at the centre. It has been believed that key agreement would be signed regarding Kathmandu-Rasuwagadhi railway construction during the President Xi’s visit.

            National Railway Authority of China had submitted preliminary study report of Kathmandu railway to the government on last December.  The distance of Kerung-Kathmandu railway would be around 80 kilometres and around Rs 300 billion investment has been estimated for its construction. 

            Earlier, the Chinese company has already carried out feasibility study on the issue of 171-kilometre Kathmandu-Pokhara railway.  An understanding was reached to forward process for the construction of the railway during the Prime Minister Oli’s China visit held from June 19, 2018.

            Government officials said that there would be key agreement on the issues including DPR preparation during the Chinese President’s visit.

            Chief of Department of International Relations of the Tribhuvan University, Khadga KC, who participated in the discussion organised by PM Oli, said that further agreement regarding the investment model by completing necessary study for the construction of Kerung-Kathmandu railway might be signed.  

            Similarly, key agreement regarding the issue of the railway was signed during President Bidya Bhandari’s China visit held from May 2, 2019. The Belt and Road Initiatives forwarded by China has also incorporated the Kerung-Kathmandu railway.

            Saying mainly discussion would be held on the issue of road and connectivity with China, Spokesperson of the Nepal Communist Party, Narayankaji Shrestha, who also participated in the discussion organised by Prime Minister Oli, said that discussion would be held with China regarding upgradation and operation of Kimathanka and Korala check points, construction of Tokha-Chhahare tunnel and upgradation of Araniko highway.

            Likewise, preparation was underway to construction Rasuwagadhi-Ratmate 400 KV Transmission Line.  The Nepal Electric Authority has taken to feasibility study of the transmission line to the final phase. The government is also in preparation to sign agreement about the project during Chinese president Xi’s state visit to Nepal.

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