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India, Nepal discuss forthcoming SAARC Summit

October 20
20:52 2014
External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj meeting with Mahendra Bahadur Pandey, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Nepal in New Delhi

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj meeting with Mahendra Bahadur Pandey, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Nepal in New Delhi

New Delhi, Oct 20 India and Nepal discussed the forthcoming SAARC Summit to be held in Kathmandu Nov 26-27 during a meeting between External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and her Nepalese counterpart Mahendra Bahadur Pandey here Monday.

Pandey said Nepal greatly appreciates India’s ‘Neighbours First’ policy and that the South Asian Association of Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Summit would be meeting in the light of this changed situation in South Asia.

Sushma Swaraj assured Pandey of positive Indian response to the request made by Nepal for logistical support.

She reaffirmed that the SAARC process touches real life of the people of South Asia and India is committed to increasing trade and commerce as well as connectivity and people-to-people interaction, said official sources.

As a run-up to the SAARC Summit, India has hosted meetings of SAARC Cultural and Energy Ministers and will also be hosting meeting of the education ministers of the SAARC later this month.

The two ministers also discussed the follow up to the Joint Commission Meeting which was held in Kathmandu in July 2014 after a gap of 23 years and reviewed the follow up measures that were required to be taken to implement the announcements made during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s historic visit to Kathmandu in August 2014.

Sushma Swaraj said she was happy to note that the Power Development Agreement for the Upper Karnali project has been signed and the Power Trade Agreement was to be signed in Kathmandu Tuesday.

She also hoped that the negotiations in case of the other hydro-electric projects would also to be expedited.

Both sides welcomed the swift follow up that is being taken to implement the outcomes agreed to between the two countries.

Sushma Swaraj said she was heartened at the progress made on various India-Nepal projects since the Joint Commission Meeting.

She also briefed the visiting Minister on the efforts underway in India to work out new modalities for certain priority projects.

She said that India is awaiting Nepal’s concurrence of the draft agreement for $1 billion Line of Credit announced during Modi’s visit so that high priority projects of the government of Nepal could be considered for implementation at an early date, the official sources said.

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