Aussie scholarships, more aid on the cards
KATHMANDU, AUG 08 - Visiting Australian Parliamentary Secretary for Foreign Affairs and Pacific Island Affairs, Richard Marles , on Tuesday announced over 80 Australia Award scholarships to Nepal over the next four years and a training programme for officials of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
However, the details of the scholarship programme were not disclosed immediately.
In a statement issued before wrapping up his two-day visit to Nepal, Marles committed more Australian aid in the days to come.
He met Prime Minister Baburam Bhattarai, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs, Narayan Kaji Shrestha and other ministers and officials during his visit.
In a meeting with Shrestha, Marles assured continued Australian support to Nepal, a statement issued by the Foreign Ministry said.
"Australia has more than tripled its assistance to Nepal in the past five years," said Marles. "In 2012-13, AusAID will invest $35 million in education, health, rural livelihood and governance reform to improve the quality of life of the Nepali people."
Marles also said that the mutual support and cooperation between Nepal and Australia in international forums had been instrumental in fulfilling the mutual interests of the two countries.
On the political front, Marles said he hoped the political parties here would soon agree on a new roadmap for democracy.
"Australia looks forward to Nepal finalising a constitution and tackling the complex issues of federal restructuring," he said. "Nepal has many friends and a growing community of Nepalis in Australia who want to see it achieve lasting peace and prosperity."
While in Kathmandu, Marles visited the Tilganga Institute of Ophthalmology, Nepal's world-class eye care facility, which is supported by AusAID and the Fred Hollows Foundation, Australian NGO.
Posted on: 2012-08-08 01:00