Nepal for rules-based international order: Foreign Minister Gyawali

KATHMANDU (The Kathmandu Post/ANN) - Foreign Minister Pradeep Gyawali has said that a country like Nepal has always been a firm advocate of rules-based, predictable international order.

Small countries do not have resources and capacity to be engaged in such geopolitical contestation, he said on Thursday while addressing the Raisina Dialogue 2019 in New Delhi.

“We are a believer in multilateralism, where we can get our voices heard; problems and challenges recognized, and support be extended. Small countries may not have adequate strength and competence to engage in bilateral deals with bigger players and this is why they cherish the cushion provided by collective negotiations in multilateral and regional forums.”

Rules-based order is essential for our survival, he said at the gathering of diplomats and officials from various countries assembled in the Indian capital city.

Nepal has constructively participated in the existing global economic architecture and have demanded that such architecture should be inclusive, democratic and enabling for the most resource-constrained countries to address the gaps and deprivation, Gyawali said.

Nearer in the region, the foreign minister said, Nepal has always been a campaigner for greater regional integration.

He also emphasised the importance of good and harmonious relations between our two big neighbours.

“When these two rise together, the rise of Asia becomes unstoppable. We were encouraged, in this context, by the positive vibe that last year’s Wuhan summit created. We are of the view that one country’s rise should not be seen as a threat to the other,” Gyawali said, underscoring the need for a trilateral cooperation among Nepal, India and China.

“Cognizant of the fact that we can work together in neighbourhood for our mutual benefit and common prosperity, we have been emphasising the need of a trilateral partnership among three countries. Such partnership would entail working together for better physical connectivity, deeper economic linkages and greater people-to-people connections.”

On Nepal’s foreign policy,  Gyawali said that Nepal pursues an independent foreign policy and conducts of external relations is based on a balanced and independent outlook.

On relations with India, he said, Nepal and India were close neighbours that share comprehensive and multifaceted relations.

“Our economic partnership is robust and has a long history. India is our biggest trading partner, source of FDI and a main transit country. We are connected by geography as well as history, by our religions as well as culture,” he said.