PM Modi arrives in Nepal to attend BIMSTEC summit

Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived in Kathmandu on Thursday, to attend the fourth Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) summit.

Modi, who is on a two-day visit to Nepal was welcomed by Nepal’s Defence Minister Ishwar Pokhrel.

The Prime Minister on Wednesday said that “his participation in the BIMSTEC summit in Kathmandu signals India’s highest priority to its neighbourhood and a strong commitment to continue deepening ties with the ‘extended neighbourhood’ in South-East Asia.”

The BIMSTEC summit, which is slated to be held from August 30 to August 31, is the regional group of seven countries geographically situated near the Bay of Bengal. It includes Bangladesh, India, Bhutan, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Nepal.

In a statement before leaving for Nepal, Prime Minister Modi said that he will interact with the leaders of Myanmar, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Sri Lanka and Thailand on the margins of the summit, to further enrich their regional cooperation and advance the collective efforts to build a peaceful and prosperous Bay of Bengal region.

He also said, “I also look forward to meeting Prime Minister of Nepal, Rt. Hon. K.P. Sharma Oli and reviewing the progress we have made in our bilateral ties since my last visit to Nepal in May 2018.  Prime Minister Oli and I will have the honour and privilege to inaugurate the Nepal Bharat Maitri Dharmashala at the Pashupatinath temple complex.”

He further added, “I am confident that the Fourth BISMTEC Summit will further consolidate the progress made thus far under BIMSTEC, and will chart the course for building a peaceful and prosperous Bay of Bengal Region.”