By Sharachchanddra Bhandary
In recent years, China has been amicably pursuing the policy of public diplomacy. It is intensively focused on promoting people-to-people contacts. The Central and Provincial Governments of China have effectively applied the public diplomacy tool in garnering support as well. In the last week of August, more than 60 journalists from Nepal travelled to various parts of China and took stock of phenomenal development taking place there. Not only media personnel but also scores of parliamentarians and staff members of the Parliament Secretariat visited China the same week. Yet another team of watch-dog of the watch-dongs is currently in China.
Unlike several previous visits, this time around, this scribe was invited by the Department of Foreign and Overseas Chinese Affairs of Sichuan Provincial People’s Government in close collaboration and coordination with the Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu. The Provincial Government partnering with Jincheng College of Sichuan University, for the first time hosted a ‘Nepal Media Training Session’ for ten days. Eleven working journalists from different print and television stations participated and better understood the functioning of Chinese media in addition to honing their capabilities.
It was a unique opportunity for us to have firsthand knowledge of Chinese society, the socio-economic developments unfolding, Central and Provincial Government’s domestic and foreign policy, top leadership’s priority, China’s stance on burning issues of regional and international concern. The prime objectives of the training session was to strengthen exchanges and cooperation between Sichuan and Nepal in Media sector which consisted of teaching, seminar, interaction and site visits with pragmatic approaches.
Audio and video languages, production of mini movies, new media and media convergence, media response to emergency, production of documentary, Virtual Reality were inducted in rigorous training sessions confined in the class room. Interaction with the officials of Changdu City Planning Museum, Changdu Radio and Television, Sichuan Radio and Television, survey at Tianfu Soft Park and Tianfu New Area, a tour to Changdu Giant Panda Park and Global Center and Kuan and Zhai Ally to experience local culture of Sichuan was really an eye-opener to all participants. In order to enhance Nepali media professionals’ understanding to Sichuan and promote practical exchanges and cooperation this training session was quite productive. We found Sichuan full of exciting and interesting places for people of all walks of life. It is culturally and historically rich province with a vibrant economy.
Not only at the people’s level but also at the governmental level, Nepal and China have been enjoying warm and cordial relations based on friendship, goodwill, understanding and mutual cooperation ever since the establishment of diplomatic relations in 1955. The relations are founded on the principles of peaceful co-existence, sovereign equality, non-interference, and respect for each other’s sensitivities. With the objective of promoting mutual interest both countries have been working tirelessly together not only at the bilateral levels but also at the regional and international forums. Both countries have remained a reliable and trusted partner to each other in nurturing the bond of warm relationship through enhanced engagement in political, economic and other spheres that are mutual beneficial.
Development is hard to come by without economic progress, and sustainable economic growth and social development are not possible without meaningful and mutually beneficial engagement among nations in today’s interdependent and interconnected world. Keeping this in mind China has been consistently pursuing its track two diplomacy so as to further deepen people-to-people relations. As Nepal strives for making relations between Nepal and China deeper and wider, she looks forward to more exchanges at different levels and meaningful cooperation between our friendly countries in the days to come. The strong, spontaneous and generous support to Nepal’s overall development manifests Beijing’s sincere desire to this end.
It would be relevant to mention Chinese Ambassador to Nepal Yu Hong’s remarks, “We’re here to promote our relations further deeper and extend every possible assistance for the sustainable development of this beautiful country. The wide roads and high buildings that you see in China are of less significance to us and we’d like to see in your writings the foreign policy that we’ve been pursuing towards Nepal and the priority we’ve attached to her peace, prosperity and continuous progress”.