Beijing may have its differences with New Delhi but China wants to join hands with India to develop Nepal which is lagging behind the two much bigger neighbours.
China thinks instead of bilateral mechanisms to achieve that goal, trilateral cooperation among all three countries would be beneficial not just for Nepal but for the region as well.
“We would like to have more cooperation with India to support Nepal’s development. We are positive about this kind of trilateral cooperation,” China’s ambassador to Nepal Yang Houlan said here on Friday.
Interacting with journalists at Reporters Club, Houlan informed that there have already been “many consultations” between India and China on developments in Nepal and ways to help the Himalayan nation.
“Quick development of Nepal is in India’s as well as China’s interest. It will be beneficial for all three countries and also the region,” he said.
Refuting any conflict of interest with India in Nepal, Houlan stressed that China supports more Indian involvement in Kathmandu without affecting Nepal’s sovereignty.
“Our policy is never to intervene in politics of other countries. We hope Nepal can get out of its political problems soon and enter a new period of development,” he said.
Stating that Nepal and China share common interests of security, stability and development, Houlan said Beijing’s involvement in Nepal is to support social and economic development.
“Nepal is a very important neighbour and has held significant position in Chinese diplomacy,” he mentioned.
In recent years Nepal and China have inched closer to each other in almost all sectors-----some believe at the cost of India.
There have been more bilateral visits, investments especially in the infrastructure and hydro-power sectors, financial aid to Nepal’s army and police, tourist arrivals and removal of trade barriers and tariffs.
Chinese companies have invested nearly US $ 100 million till date in 478 projects, trade between two countries increased by 57% to US $ 917 million in the first eight months of this year.
India is still Nepal’s biggest trade partner and Indian investments account for 44% of the total approved foreign direct investment of US $ 660 million.