Nepal is preparing to hold the Nepal Investment Forum (NIF), a platform to attract foreign investors and examine business opportunities with the global community, after a gap of nearly two decades. According to the Ministry of Industry (MoI), the NIF is scheduled to be held by the end of the fiscal year. The last time Nepal organised the NIF was in 1992 when the country was at the early stages of economic liberalization.
“The NIF is coming back and this platform could be more effective to create a foreign investment regime with a wide range of potential areas in Nepal for investors,” said MoI Secretary Shankar Prasad Koirala said during meeting with visiting delegation of the Confederation of Asia-Pacific Chambers of Commerce and Industry (CACCI). In order to make the investment climate more conducive, the government has formulated foreign investment, one-window and industrial policies based on which the Foreign Investment and Technology Transfer Act 1992 and the Industrial Enterprises Act 1992 were promulgated. These acts were subsequently amended in 1996 and 1997 respectively. “The NIF is considered to be one of the successful events where a large number of foreign investors attended and its impact remained for a long time,” Koirala said.
Meanwhile, the MoI is working to set up a Nepal Investment Portal (NIP), a digital platform that will enable global investors to get information about a wide range of investment areas in the country more easily and efficiently. USAID has provided technical support for the project. The portal will come into operation in six months, according to the MoI. Assuring foreign investors that Nepal’s investment climate was favourable, the Ministry of Industry (MoI) on Monday requested the CACCI delegation to put money in potential fields that have been identified as priority areas for the government and private sectors.
During a brief meeting with the visiting delegation of the Confederation of Asia-Pacific Chambers of Commerce and Industry (CACCI), a regional grouping of apex national chambers of commerce and industry, business associations and business enterprises in Asia and the Western Pacific, the MoI urged investment in areas such as hydropower, mines and minerals, tourism, infrastructure, cement and agriculture.
The CACCI team was led by its president Benedicto Yujuico and the Nepali private sector was represented by Suraj Vaidya, president of the Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FNCCI). Yujuico said that the CACCI was ready to extend full cooperation and support the development efforts of the government and the private sector in Nepal. Vaidya said that the working relationship between the government and the private sector was cordial, and that the public private partnership initiative has made the country’s investment regime more conducive.