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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2588

Nepal PM returns home from Europe, dubs visit 'successful' and 'as expected'

Kosh Raj Koirala – Asian Tribune Correspondent in Nepal

Kathmandu, 05 April, (Asiantribune.com): Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal returned home on Saturday after a week-long official visit to two Scandinavian nations.

Talking to media persons upon arrival at Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu, Prime Minister Dahal dubbed the visit to Norway and Finland 'successful' and 'as expected.' These two countries are major donors to Nepal.

Prime Minister Dahal said that both Norwegian and Finnish governments pledged help in Nepal's peace process, development and the constitution drafting process.

During his three-day stay in Norway, Dahal met his Norwegian counterpart Jens Stoltenberg, other senior government officials and interacted with business leaders and hydropower power experts.

Nepal and Norway had also inked a deal on development cooperation. The PM informed that the Norwegian side agreed to increase investment in hydropower sector and also establish a polytechnic institute in Nepal.

He said that Finland has promised to double its assistance to Nepal in the next three years. Nepal will see 25 percent of increase in Norwegian assistance to Nepal this year.

During his departure from Kathmandu on March 28, Prime Minister Dahal had said that he would help garner support from these two countries for hydropower and wind energy development in Nepal.

His 19-member delegation included government officials, representatives of business community, hydro power experts and journalists.

Nepal, which is considered as the second richest country after Brazil in terms of water resource, is currently facing 16-hour a day load shedding. The government is looking for alternative sources for generating electricity to meet its immediate needs in the wake of criticism from various quarters including from industrialists.

Prime Minister informed that Finland has agreed to take charge of maintenance of a thermal plant based in Biratnagar, a small town situated in eastern part of the country, in order to bring it into full-fledged operation. The Finnish government officials have also shown readiness to help promoted forestry sector in Nepal.

This is the third foreign trip of Prime Minister Dahal after he was elected as the head of the government on August 15. He has already visited northern neighbor China and southern neighbor India after he assumed the top post of chief executive in the country.

Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Upendra Yadav left the country for a six-day visit to China on Saturday. He is scheduled to meet with his counterpart, Yang Jeichi, and other top political leaders there from April 7-8.

According to Ministry for Foreign Affairs, the FM´s visit is aimed at making necessary "preparation" for Prime Minister Dahal´s upcoming trip to China at the end of April. However, the date for the PM´s visit has not yet been fixed. "The FM´s visit may set the date," said Om Sharma, the press advisor to the Prime Minister Dahal.

- Asian Tribune -

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