Foreign Affairs
Jiang Zemin: Profounder of “Sino-Nepalese good-neighborly friendship and cooperation”

Bidhur Dhakal

Former President of People’s Republic of China, Jiang Zemin passed away due to leukemia and multiple organ failure in Shanghai at 12:13 p.m. on Nov. 30, 2022, at the age of 96. The announcement made by the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC), the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress of the People’s Republic of China (PRC), the State Council of the PRC, the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, and the Central Military Commissions of the CPC and the PRC as reported in Xinuha.

It was announced in a letter addressing the whole Party, the entire military and the Chinese people of all ethnic groups.

The letter says they proclaim with profound grief to the whole Party, the entire military and the Chinese people of all ethnic groups that our beloved Comrade Jiang Zemin died of leukemia and multiple organ failure after all medical treatments had failed.

The letter says that Comrade Jiang Zemin was an outstanding leader enjoying high prestige acknowledged by the whole Party, the entire military and the Chinese people of all ethnic groups, a great Marxist, a great proletarian revolutionary, statesman, military strategist and diplomat, a long-tested communist fighter, and an outstanding leader of the great cause of socialism with Chinese characteristics. He was the core of the CPC’s third generation of central collective leadership and the principal founder of the Theory of Three Represents.

Profounder of Sino-Nepalese Relations

Jiang Zemin (1926-2022) was the President of People’s Republic of China from 1993-2003. He visited Nepal in December 1996 – the next visit come after 23 years later on October 2019 by President Xi Jinping.

In 2019, during the visit of President Xi Jinping, Sher Bahadur Deuba, current prime minister of Nepal met with him and recalled the visit of Jiang. “We also talked about the ties that Nepali Congress always has with Chinese Communist Party for a very long time. It was also a time to relive the memories of President Jiang Zemin’s visit to Nepal during my first tenure as Prime Minister. I am confident that President Xi’s visit will take Nepal-China relations to a new high, and the two countries will tremendously benefit from each other in sectors ranging from trade, energy to infrastructure,” Deuba stated after the visit.

In December 1996, Chinese President Jiang Zemin visited Nepal, during which time he met with Nepali Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba. The two sides were agreed to establish China-Nepal Friendly and Neighborly Partnership of Generations into the 21st Century. During his visit, Jiang met with King Birendra Bir Bikram Shah.

On the morning of February 27 2002, Chinese President Jiang Zemin met with Birendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev, king of Nepal, who was invited to the Boao Forum for Asia as a special guest.

King Birendra thanked Jiang for the invitation, which offers him the opportunity to visit China again and attend the Boao Forum in Hainan. President Jiang said that the king’s visit is the first visit to China by a head of state in the new century, demonstrating the close relations of good-neighborliness between China and Nepal.

Jiang said the king’s presence at the Boao Forum for Asia has added glory to the forum.

Meanwhile, Jiang has purposed four points on Sino-Nepalese good-neighborly friendship and cooperation on 2002. On the afternoon of July 10, 2002, President Jiang Zemin met with visiting Nepalese King Gyanendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev at the Great Hall of the People. Jiang put forward four proposals on further promoting Sino-Nepalese good-neighborly friendship and cooperation.

He pointed out that Nepal is an important neighbor of China’s. Despite their differences, China and Nepal have always treated and supported each other as equals; China is a trustworthy friend of Nepal’s.

During Jiang’s visit to Nepal in 1996, he and the late king reached an agreement on establishing Sino-Nepalese good-neighborly partnership for the generations to come. Jiang said that the Chinese side will forever cherish the memory of the contributions King Birendra has made to the friendship between the two countries.

President Jiang set forth several proposals on further developing the Sino-Nepalese friendly and good-neighborly cooperative relations:

First, both sides should actively conduct a full range of multi-level exchanges. Apart from continuing the traditional practice of top leaders’ visits, more exchanges should be encouraged between parliaments, political parties, industrial and commercial circles, the press and non-governmental organizations from both countries, in order to increase mutual understanding and trust. He mentioned that the Sino-Nepalese Friendship Association has just been formally founded recently, which has offered a new channel for the enhancement of non-governmental exchanges.

Secondly, both sides should vigorously expand the Sino-Nepalese trade and economic cooperation. Both economies in China and Nepal have their respective strengths of complementarity. To strengthen the mutually beneficial cooperation is in the common interests of both countries. The Chinese side hopes this kind of cooperation could develop on a broader scale and more deeply.

Thirdly, both sides should actively promote exchanges and cooperation between China’s Tibet and Nepal. Tibet and Nepal share border, which provides a particularly favorable natural condition for the development of cooperation. Jiang said that an agreement on trade and other issues between China’s Tibet and Nepal, to be signed that day, would greatly facilitate communication and cooperation between Tibet and Nepal.

Fourthly, both sides should boost communication, coordination and cooperation in regional and international affairs. Jiang said that the Chinese side sincerely thanks Nepal for its long-standing and precious support on issues like Tibet, Taiwan and human rights, noting that he hopes to continue such good cooperation in the international arena.

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