On April 20th, the Nepalese Minister of Foreign Affairs, Pradip Kumar Gyawali, led a visiting delegation to Sichuan University, where he gave a well-received talk on “Nepal-China Relations and Development Prospects in the Trans-Himalayan Region.”
SCU’s Chairman of the University Council, Wang Jianguo, met with Mr. Gyawali, welcoming the Nepalese delegation to Sichuan University and outlining SCU’s successful efforts toward promoting Sino-Nepalese relations through academic and educational cooperation and exchange within the wider framework of China’s Belt and Road Initiative. Wang Jianguo pointed out that the two countries, joined by rivers and mountain ranges, have enjoyed a long history of cultural exchanges; the people of China and Nepal are “good neighbors” and “good friends,” he added. President Xi has emphasized the priority to be given to economic rejuvenation and development in Nepal as part of the Belt and Road Initiative, which will also improve bilateral relations between China and Nepal. Mr. Gyawali’s visit to SCU, Wang said, was an important sign of goodwill and signals the strengthening of cooperative ties between Sichuan University and institutions of higher learning in Nepal.
Gyawali recalled some of the history of Sino-Nepalese relations and his impressions of a 2016 forum hosted by Sichuan University on the topic of Nepal, China, and the Belt and Road Initiative, stressing that both sides relied on each other’s friendship. The people of Nepal, Mr. Gyawali noted, welcome President Xi’s Belt and Road Initiative. Gyawali also expressed his admiration for the rapid progress China has made in the past forty years of Reform and Opening-up. He looks forward to increased cooperation with Sichuan University, especially in the areas of people-to-people and educational exchange and is confident that this will contribute to Nepal’s rejuvenation and development.
On the same day, the Nepalese Minister of Foreign Affairs was invited to give a special lecture on China-Nepal relations, which was well-received by students and faculty of SCU. President Li Yanrong offered a word of welcome, introducing Mr. Gyawali as an outstanding politician and diplomat and an old friend of Sichuan University. President Li described Gyawali’s visit as one that furthered “our important partnership, contributes to our understanding of Nepal’s society, economy, and culture, and opens up new opportunities for cultural and educational cooperation and exchange between our countries.”
Mr.Gyawali’s lecture on “Nepal-China Relations and Development Prospects in the Trans-Himalayan Region” offered an insightful discussion of important concerns in contemporary Sino-Nepalese relations. Quoting SCU’s motto in Chinese, the Foreign Minister went on to relate the significant opportunities created by the Belt and Road Initiative in the Pan-Himalayan Region. Sichuan Province, which is located at the heart of the Silk Road Economic Belt, has played a vital role in the history of its development. Gyawali hopes that Sichuan and Nepal will work together more closely in the near future.
The lecture was received with applause and followed by a lively round of Q&A.