Envoy calls for enhanced Nepal-India cooperation

aidia_IndiaKATHMANDU, APR 06 – Indian Ambassador to Nepal Ranjeet Ray on Sunday said that Nepal and India should chart out the areas having mutual and comparative advantages to expand the economic ties between the two neighbours.

Addressing the Asian Institute of Diplomacy and International Affairs (AIDIA) Asia Conclave on Nepal-India Future Economic Partnership, Ray emphasized the need to work together in areas like hydropower, service sector, information and technology and agriculture, among others.

“There are possibilities beyond hydro,” Rae said. “Both the countries can focus on high value information and technology related areas, and high value medical, education and sports sectors, among others.”

The Indian envoy added that Nepal had a special space in the Neighbour First policy of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi which can help increase the economic bond between the two.

He also explained Modi’s foreign policy mantra “Sabka Saath, Sabka Bikaas” which means Together with All, Development for All as the focal point for the enhancement of South Asia’s economic cooperation and understanding.

Similarly, Dattesh Prabhu Parulekar, spokesperson of the Bharatiya Janata Party’s Foreign Policy Cell, stressed the importance of the transition from economic interdependency to economic synergy and the need for South Asian countries to work together on the basis of reciprocity rather than economic parity.

“The two countries should work on the basis of reciprocity in areas like human resource development, expansion of financial inclusion, tourism, IT and religion, among others,” Parulekar said. He further emphasized that Modi’s foreign policy was pivotal for enhanced cooperation between the two countries.

Likewise, Suraj Vaidya, former president of the Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry, stressed the possibilities of cooperation between the two countries in energy sector development.

According to Vaidya, Nepal should think beyond politics and create a value chain to sustain the economic prosperity being achieved by the southern neighbour.

“There can be a broader partnership in the area of water resources that can be utilized for energy generation, drinking, agriculture and irrigation,” Vaidya said, adding that Nepal should not resist hydropower development plans with Indian companies at a time when the southern neighbour has been increasing investment in solar plants.

Source : eKantipur