Kathmandu, February 22
Nepal and Austria held bilateral delegation-level talks in here today in which the two sides agreed to work closely at bilateral and multilateral levels to promote bilateral relations and take them to newer heights.
Minister of Foreign Affairs Pradeep Kumar Gyawali and visiting Federal Minister for Europe, Integration and Foreign Affairs of Austria Karin Kneissl led their respective delegations in the official talks.
The talks reviewed the status of Nepal-Austria relations and explored ways to further strengthen bilateral cooperation. The two sides dwelt on the issues such as trade, investment, technology transfer, sustainable development, environmental protection, clean energy and counter terrorism, among others, according to Gyawali.
“I shared with her the major priorities of the present Government of Nepal and also discussed the goal of ‘Prosperous Nepal, Happy Nepali’. I was happy to get reassured by the Minister of Austria’s goodwill and support for Nepal’s development endeavours. I also shared with Minister Kneissl the government’s plan to host the Investment Summit on March 29 and 30. In addition, we discussed the possibility of cooperation in light of our preparations to observe 2020 as Visit Nepal Year,” said Gyawali in a press briefing after the talks.
On the occasion, Kneissl expressed commitment to continue Austrian participation in renovation and reconstruction of infrastructure in Nepal after 2015 earthquake. She said her government would also continue its effort to contribute to preservation of Nepali cultural heritage, with initiatives such as training young artists.
She said Nepal-Austria bilateral relations were not only limited to development and cultural aspects, but also in the area of investment and tourism. She said Austrian businesses would continue to invest in Nepal, and tourists from Austria would visit Nepal in 2020 Visit Nepal Year.
Kneissl also hailed Nepal’s contribution to UN peacekeeping mission.
“Inspiring discussion with my Nepali colleague Kumar Gyawali in #Kathmandu today, celebrating 60 years of bilateral relations. Talked about our long-running development cooperation and about intensifying economic engagement in the tourism, energy and infrastructure sectors,” she stated in a Twitter post after the talks.
Kneissl, who arrived in Kathmandu yesterday, also paid a courtesy call on Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli today.
A version of this article appears in print on February 23, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.