Kathmandu, July 1
Foreign affairs experts, academicians as well as political party leaders Sunday stressed on the need to make relations between Nepal and Canada dynamic.
They highlighted that Canada, as a donor country, had contributed to Nepal’s development in various sectors including energy, rural development, education, agriculture, poverty alleviation, health and food security.
"We know Canada contributed to conduct water resources study in Nepal long ago. But we failed to encourage that country to invest in the sector, otherwise we would not be having power crisis at present," foreign affairs expert and former ambassador of Nepal to Russia Hiranya Lal Shrestha said speaking at a talk program on ‘Nepal-Canada Relations: Past and Present’ organized by Nepal Canada Friendship and Cultural Association.
The interaction was held on the occasion of National Day of Canada.
Presenting a concept paper on the relations between Nepal and Canada, Shrestha said that relations were found to be dynamic in sectors of trade, tourism and joint venture while they needed to be vitalized in other sectors such as hydropower.
Saying that Nepal was suffering from trade deficit with Canada despite the fact that Canada had made import of Nepali garments tax free, Shrestha urged the business community to think of products that can be exported to Canada for comparative advantage.
Pashupati Shamser Rana, chairman of Rastriya Prajatantra Party, labeled the Canadian assistance as selfless and humanitarian.
"While assistance from India, China and USA can be linked with political motive, we cannot do so with regards to aid from countries like Canada and Norway," Rana said.
He said that Nepal should learn from Canada for hydropower development as it was a country that exported energy to the USA.
Vice-chancellor of Lumbini Boudhdha University, Triratna Manandhar, said that study should be carried out as to why Nepal suffered from trade deficit with Canada. He also noted that there was need of high level visits from both the friendly countries.
Shreedhar Gautam, general secretary of Nepal World Relation Council, highlighted that Nepal could benefit by developing tourism sector.
Dr Bhekh Bahadur Thapa, international relations expert and former minister, said that Canada was using its prosperity for the sake of humanity through its aid to developing country.
Keshav Kunwar, chairman of the Nepal-Canada Friendship and Cultural Association, stressed on the need to consolidate people-to-people relations between
Nepal and Canada through programmes by different association related to Nepal-Canada friendship.
Diplomatic relation between Nepal and Canada started from 1965. Presently Nepal has its embassy in Canada while Canada has yet to establish its diplomatic mission in Nepal although it is looked after by Canadian ambassador to India.