All parties should be one on foreign policy: PM Oli

Kathmandu, June 29

Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli said he was confident that the report of the Nepal-India Eminent Persons Group, which was ready, would be submitted to both governments soon.

Inaugurating an interaction on ‘national dialogue on foreign policy’ organised by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs here today, PM Oli said once the report was submitted, it would be discussed between the two countries and implemented.

PM Oli said all political parties and individuals of the country should be one on foreign policy issues.

He said Nepal’s relations with neighbours had deepened in recent years. “As far as our relations with other countries are concerned, we have reviewed many aspects. Our relations with our neighbours should be grounded on truth, justice and the world system,” he said and added that Nepal’s objective was to maintain friendly relations with all countries with enmity towards none.

“We are pursuing our foreign policies to spur development in all fields and I am confident that we will be able to lift our country out of poverty soon,” he said and added that the government needed to focus on economic diplomacy, not just on political diplomacy.

The PM said there should not be extra activism in diplomacy.

He further said that his government would take positive initiatives to hold the next SAARC Summit.

“I recognise the roles of those people who contributed to nation-building, unification of the country and protection of sovereignty,” the PM added.

Co-chair of Nepal Communist Party (NCP) Pushpa Kamal Dahal said that in the past, governments tended to favour a particular country, but that should end now and the government should pursue only pro-Nepal policy.

He also said that Nepal’s relations with India and China stood on their own merits and there should not be any tendency to play one neighbour against another.

He further added that all the parties which joined hands together to promulgate the new constitution should work in the same spirit now to develop the country’s common foreign policies.

Minister of Foreign Affairs Pradeep Kumar Gyawali said foreign policies were the extended form of a country’s domestic policies. He said the government was pursuing its foreign policies to protect and promote national interest. He added that Nepal’s relations were continuously growing with the countries of the world. “Given our geopolitics, we need to handle our foreign relations carefully,” he said and added that the government was sensitive about the sensitivities of neighbours.

Deputy Prime Minister and Health and Population Minister Upendra Yadav said SAARC was established with high hopes and expectations, but now it was not moving ahead due to some issues between some counties.

He also said that Nepal should play its role to promote understanding within the SAARC so that its activities could be put back on track.

Co-general Secretary of Nepali Congress Prakash Sharan Mahat said the government’s foreign policies had deviated in recent months, but the government should pursue the country’s foreign policies keeping national interests at the centre.

Rastriya Janata Party-Nepal leader Rajkishor Yadav said Nepal’s foreign policies should focus on economic diplomacy so that the country could gain economic benefits. He also said the Madhes region, which shares a long border with India, should not be overlooked in our dialogue with India on foreign policy issues.