News / Asia

China Increases Investment in Himalayan Neighbor Nepal

China Increases Investment in Himalayan Neighbor Nepali
X
May 17, 2013 5:46 PM
In recent years, Nepal has deepened its already strong ties with China - some say to counter its reliance on India for aid and investment. VOA correspondent Aru Pande takes a closer look at the relationship from Kathmandu.
TEXT SIZE - +
Aru Pande
— In recent years, Nepal has deepened its already strong ties with China - some say to counter its reliance on India for aid and investment.

In a sprawling 132-bed hospital in Nepal’s capital, patients receive treatment for everything from blood disorders to heart disease - vital services in a country that the United Nations ranks 157th in the world for human development.
   
The Civil Service Hospital, which treats the country’s 86,000 government workers as well as the general public, was inaugurated in 2009 and built by the Chinese government.
 
Hospital Director Bimal Kumar Thapa says Chinese assistance did not end with construction of the building.
 
“They will train our staff, doctors and technicians, and they will transfer the skill and transfer the technology through this hospital in Nepal and we will provide better and better service,” Thapa said.
 
China’s direct investment in Nepal nearly doubled between 2007 and 2011, with the East Asian giant funding everything from new roads to hydropower projects.
 
Nepali Times Editor Kunda Dixit says it would be absurd if a next-door neighbor of China would see a drop in investment at a time when Chinese investment is growing everywhere else in the world. He adds that Nepal also wants to come out from the shadow of India - its biggest trading partner.
 
“Geopolitically, successive Nepali governments have tried to lean over backwards to be close to China to offset our overwhelming economic and political dependence on India,” Dixit said.
 
Evidence of China and Nepal’s strong ties can even be seen here in Nepal’s education system, where more than 60 schools throughout the country offer courses in Chinese to children as young as seven years old.
 
Valley View School Secondary School in Kathmandu has been offering Chinese language classes to students for the last five years.
 
Principal Dev Raj Paneru says the instruction is key as more Nepali students and Chinese tourists cross the border.
 
“Nepali students prefer visiting China for further studies in technical fields and besides, we feel that Chinese occupancy [presence] in the market has increased a lot,” Paneru said.
 
Teacher Wan Hai Lu moved to Kathmandu from outside Beijing two years ago to teach here as part of a program set up by the Chinese embassy.  
 
“From the development of China, I think many [Nepali] people want to learn Chinese words, so I come to Nepal and I think this is a win-win business,” Li said.
 
For many in the impoverished Himalayan nation of 30 million, the hope is that being landlocked between two emerging superpowers will pay off even more in the future.

You May Like

Multimedia Anti-Keystone XL Protests Continue

Demonstrators are worried about pipeline's effect on climate change, their traditional way of life, health and safety More

Thailand's Political Power Struggle Continues

Court gave Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra until May 2 to prepare her defense over abuse of power charges but uncertainty remains over election timing More

Malaysia Plane Search Tests Limits of Ocean Mapping Technology

Expert tells VOA existing equipment’s maximum operating depth is around 6 kilometers as operation continues on ocean bed for any trace of MH370 More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Messagei
X
Penelope Poulou
April 22, 2014 5:53 PM
Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Message

Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pro-Russian Separatists Plan 'Federalization Referendum' in Eastern Ukraine

Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine say they plan to move forward next month with a referendum vote for greater autonomy, despite the Geneva agreement reached with Russia, the U.S. and Ukraine to end the political conflict. VOA's Brian Padden reports from the city of Donetsk in Eastern Ukraine.
Video

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

French filmmaker Luc Jacquet won worldwide acclaim for his 2005 Academy Award-winning documentary "March of the Penguins". Now Jacquet is back with a new film that takes movie-goers deep into the heart of a tropical rainforest - not only to celebrate its grandeur, but to make the case for its survival. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Boston Marathon Bittersweet for Many Runners

Monday's running of the Boston Marathon was bittersweet for many of the 36,000 participants as they finished the run that was interrupted by a double bombing last year. Many gathered along the route paid respect to the four people killed as a result of two bombings near the finish line. VOA's Carolyn Presutti returned to Boston this year to follow two runners, forever changed because of the crimes.
Video

Video International Students Learn Film Production in World's Movie Capital

Hollywood - which is part of Los Angeles - is the movie capital of the world, and many aspiring filmmakers go there in hopes of breaking into the movie business. Mike O'Sullivan reports that regional universities are also a magnet for students who hope to become producers or directors.
Video

Video Pacific Rim Trade Deal Proves Elusive

With the U.S.-led war in Iraq ended and American military involvement in Afghanistan winding down, President Barack Obama has sought to pivot the country's foreign policy focus towards Asia. One aspect of that pivot is the negotiation of a free-trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations. But as Obama leaves this week on a trip to four Asian countries he has found it very difficult to complete the trade pact. VOA's Ken Bredemeier has more from Washington.
Video

Video Autistic Adults Face Housing, Job Challenges

Many parents of children with disabilities fear for the future of their adult child. It can be difficult to find services to help adults with disabilities - physical, mental or emotional - find work or live on their own. The mother of an autistic boy set up a foundation to advocate for the estimated 1.2 million American adults with autism, a developmental disorder that causes communication difficulties and often social difficulties. VOA's Faiza Elmasry reports.
AppleAndroid