China remains Nepal’s main partner in foreign direct investment, and opening up new markets for Chinese goods is an important economic agenda to help keep its indebted state-owned enterprises (SOEs) afloat.
On the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the CPC, Maoist leader Pushpa Kamal Dahal recently penned an article for World Socialism Studies (世界社会主义研究) WeChat page highlighting party-to-party relations between Nepal and China as an important factor ‘to coordinate development strategies of two countries, promote and facilitate the launch of major infrastructure projects’.
At the same time, high-level CPC visits to help NCP to settle its internal dispute last year showed China’s strong preference for the ruling party’s stability. This not only has strengthened party ties, but also removed constraints due to diplomatic protocol – serving as a ‘fast track’ for CPC leaders to promote its economic interests in Nepal.
The CPC and NCP tie-up, although being party-to-party, therefore formed an integral part of larger bilateral ties between two countries. This is despite the CPC mandating contact with non-Communist parties as well, and fostering good working relations with all parties.
After training NCP leaders on Xi Jinping Thought, China held a virtual conference with Nepal’s major parties for the first time in October 2020. Unlike the CPC-NCP ideology training, the session was mostly to ‘seek commitment from Nepali political parties’ on the Trans-Himalaya Multidimensional Connectivity Network.
Similarly, a virtual meeting hosted by the CPC International Department in May on jointly combatting Covid-19 through inter-party channels preceded China’s announcement of a further grant of 1 million doses. That meeting included leaders of both the UML and Maoist Centre, the Nepali Congress, the Janata Samajbadi Party, and others.
The CCP started as a small meeting between 53 students and journalists in the French quarter of Shanghai in 1921, and 100 years later has gone on to become the most dominant political party in the world.
The transition from a revolutionary party to a ruling party, then the founding of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) in 1949, and now its emergence as a world economic power has been shepherded by the CCP and leaders like Mao and Deng Xiaoping.
With more than 90 million members, the CPC remains the absolute power and is at the center of all Chinese politics and economy. The party controls and coordinates all aspects of government, its people’s congress, and foreign affairs matters.