Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba has said the United Kingdom (UK) is the oldest friend of Nepal and the bilateral relations between the two countries are based on mutual friendship, goodwill and trust since the establishment.
In his address to a reception jointly organised by the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Nepal and the UK Nepal Trade and Investment Forum here on Saturday evening, the Prime Minister said he was encouraged by the goodwill and solidarity expressed in the UK Parliament towards Nepal on various occasions and it was a warm reminder that Nepal had great friends in difficult times.
He took time to say that the long involvement and contribution of the Ex-Gurkhas remained as one of the specific features of the bilateral relations.
PM Deuba urged for giving continuity and regularity of bilateral visits of parliamentary delegations in the days ahead to further strengthen the ties existing between the parliamentarians of both countries.
“Common faith in parliamentary democracy is the basic feature of Nepal-UK relations and the APPG as a parliamentary body for Nepal has an important role in promoting these relations. The UK parliament is not just considered an institution for democracy, it is commended as the symbol of multi-party democracy and fundamental freedoms as well,” the Prime Minister said.
Stating that Nepal’s democracy was making sincere effort to consolidate its foundation, the Prime Minister said Nepal had history of a long struggle for democracy and freedoms.
"Nepal is a young democracy, making sincere efforts to strengthen the foundation of its democratic institutions," the PM said.
As he said democracy and freedom are very dear to him personally as he had tirelessly fought for them for decades.
“Parliamentary democracy, periodic elections, inclusive representation, rule of law, independent judiciary, the separation of power, check and balance and peaceful handover of political power are the salient features of the Nepal’s Constitution,” the Prime Minister said.
Informing that the Constitution of Nepal has ensured 33 per cent representation of women at the federal parliament and province assembly and 40 percent at local level, he said that now all elected bodies have 41 percent their representation.
There have been challenges for a country like Nepal to carry out economic development with limited resources and COVID-19 has additionally affected its capacity for its development, he said.
Saying that he was excited about harmony and solidarity expressed in the UK parliament towards Nepal, he thanked British lawmakers for landing a helping hand and offering solidarity to the country in times of COVID-19 crisis.
On the occasion, Virendra Sharma MP Chair of All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Nepal, Lord Sheikh, Vice Chair of APPG and President of UK Nepal Trade and Investment Forum, Lord Lancaster and Catherine West MP also shed light on bilateral relations between Nepal and the UK.
PM Deuba, who is currently in the UK, is leading a Nepali delegation to the World Leaders' Summit in the 26th Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP26). The COP26 is taking place in Glasgow city of Scotland, the UK from October 31 to November 12.
Representatives of Ex-British Gurkha Association will meet PM Deuba today. Likewise, he is scheduled to attend a ceremony to be organised by the Nepali Embassy in London in his honour.
Source: National News Agency Nepal