Indian External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar to visit Kathmandu for bilateral talks

Formal Agreement Expected for Exporting 10,000 MW Electricity from Nepal to India

KATHMANDU: Indian External Affairs Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar is set to embark on a two-day official visit to Nepal, arriving in Kathmandu on Thursday. The visit is in conjunction with the seventh meeting of the Nepal-India Joint Commission (JC), a forum led by the foreign ministers of both nations.

Jaishankar is scheduled to land in Kathmandu at 10 AM via a special Indian Air Force aircraft, as confirmed by the Personal Secretariat of Nepali Foreign Minister NP Saud.

The JC meeting will focus on the implementation of agreements established during Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal’s visit to India. A formal agreement for the export of 10,000 MW electricity from Nepal to India over the next decade, in line with the recent understanding between the two Prime Ministers, is expected to be signed.

Additionally, Nepal and India are poised to reach a separate agreement on India’s proposal to augment funds for small development projects under the High-impact Community Development Projects.

Discussions on finalizing the Pancheshwar Multi-purpose Project will also take place, although a comprehensive agreement on this matter seems less likely at present, according to government officials.

While the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) is yet to finalize the agenda for the JC meeting, consultations have taken place, including a meeting between Foreign Minister NP Saud and former foreign secretaries, foreign ministers, and ambassadors of Nepal to India.

The suggestions included addressing the trade deficit, expanding power trade, enhancing cross-border infrastructures, expediting stalled projects funded by India, and securing additional air entry routes for newly-constructed international airports.

During his stay in Kathmandu, Minister Jaishankar is expected to make courtesy calls on President Ram Chandra Paudel, Prime Minister Dahal, Nepali Congress President Sher Bahadur Deuba, and CPN-UML Chairman KP Sharma Oli.

He will also inaugurate a library building at Tribhuvan University, constructed with India’s assistance, before returning to New Delhi. The visit underscores the ongoing diplomatic efforts between Nepal and India to strengthen bilateral ties and address key regional issues.

Fiscal Nepal |
Wednesday January 3, 2024, 11:27:02 AM |

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