The BRI deal was signed by Nepal and China almost six years ago, but little real progress has been made since then.

Senior Chinese and Nepali government officials reviewed the whole range of their bilateral relations in Beijing, but they omitted to indicate that the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and Global Security Initiative (GSI) were also topics of conversation.

There was no mention of the BRI and GSI talks in a statement made by the Nepali side on Friday night after the conclusion of the 15th meeting of the Bilateral Diplomatic Consultation Mechanism between the Foreign Ministries of Nepal and China.

The BRI deal was signed by Nepal and China almost six years ago, but little real progress has been made since then.

Beijing has proposed the GSI, a new security architecture, and is pressuring Nepal to embrace it. However, Nepal has not yet answered.

According to a statement released by the Nepalese Embassy in China, both parties evaluated the bilateral relations and cooperation that already exist between Nepal and China and discussed ways to further expand and consolidate cooperation in a number of areas, including the exchanging of visits between the two countries, economic cooperation, promotion of trade, investment, and tourism, building connectivity, and strengthening cooperation in areas such as agriculture, education, culture, and people-to-people relations, among others.

The two sides spoke about fostering intercultural exchanges and collaboration, boosting the number of scholarships available to Nepali professionals and students, and building the skills of technical specialists, among other topics.

At the conference, it was decided to speed up the projects’ execution in order to finish them on time while simultaneously reviewing the status of other infrastructure development projects funded by China and projects with Chinese contractors.

Bharat Raj Paudyal, the foreign secretary of Nepal, advocated giving preferential status to the country’s main exports, including tea, coffee, herbal items, cooked buffalo meat, and other agricultural goods, in an effort to minimize the trade imbalance.

According to the statement, the Chinese side agreed to encourage Chinese investors to make investments in sectors that would benefit both parties.

On this occasion, the two sides discussed their collaboration in multilateral fora, notably the UN, as well as their exchange of mutual support for one other’s candidacies.

They also spoke on how crucial it is to carry out the UN Sustainable Development Goals and how effective the GDI is in advancing the SDG agenda.

The group from China was headed by Sun Weidong, vice minister of foreign affairs.

Paudyal expressed his gratitude to the Chinese government for choosing Nepal as one of their outbound travel destinations during the meeting.

Nepal’s unwavering commitment to the “one China” policy and observance of the five principles of peaceful coexistence were praised by the vice minister of China.

According to the Nepali side’s statement, Paudyal praised China for its non-interference stance and support for Nepal’s sovereignty, territorial integrity, and political independence.

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