Nepali Times Asian Paints
Interview
"Compromise should be found"




MIN BAJRACHARYA

Finland's Under-secretary of State at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Marjatta Satu Rasi, met top government officials, key political parties and Maoist leaders on an official visit to Kathmandu. She spoke to Nepali Times about her government's concerns:

Are you here on a special mission?
Yes and no. We haven't had bilateral consultations for a long time with the government of Nepal for obvious reasons. The timing is perfect but didn't know I would be here during such interesting times.

Will there be an increase in aid from your country?
I can't promise that now as it depends on what happens here.

What is your perspective on Nepal's political progress?
There is of course a deadlock situation. Some sort of compromise should be found. It is quite important that elections take place as planned in November and help the country get back to normalcy.

Has the current political crisis posed obstacles to your aid?
We have stayed here throughout all the turbulent years. We will continue our cooperation.

What are you expecting from your aid in Nepal?
We have two top priorities. One, Finland is concerned about climate change, which is on every international agenda these days with environmental issues and sustainable use of natural resources. In the years ahead we may concentrate on these issues. Two, we are also trying to help countries emerging from a conflict and crisis situation and also trying to help in peace processes.

It seems that a large chunk of aid money is going to peace-building and less to development.
You can't have development without security. You have to have security and a politically and a militarily stable society to build it.

What is your crucial concern for Nepal now?
My personal feelings are a bit confused to be quite honest about what's going to happen, and if the elections are postponed hopefully it will not be for a long time. The Nepali people deserve stability and development. We want to see more tourists coming to this country, which is so beautiful, but tourists also require stability.


LATEST ISSUE
638
(11 JAN 2013 - 17 JAN 2013)


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