August 9: A delegation of Nepal-USA Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NUSACCI) led by its President Kiran P Saakha paid a courtesy call to Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba at his official residence in Baluwatar recently.
The meeting on August 6 was arranged introduce the newly elected NUSACCI executive board members to the prime minister. During the occasion, the delegation also briefed the PM about the activities undertaken by NUSACCI as well as various issues related to Nepal-USA trade and investment.
Issuing a statement, NUSACCI said that Saakha extended sincere thanks and gratitude to Prime Minister Deuba for giving his valuable time to meet the NUSACCI delegation.
During the meeting, Saakh said that the NUSACCI was a bilateral chamber with over 28 years of existence and also briefed the role played by NUSACCI for strengthening bilateral ties between the two countries in the areas of trade and investment and its stance on early ratification of MCC by parliament.
The USA is one of the major trading partners of Nepal, said the statement, adding that Nepal’s trade balance with the USA was in a deficit since a couple of years.
NUSACCI informed that the major share of Nepal export to USA comprises carpet followed by felt and cat and dog food. In view of this, the delegation stressed on an urgent need for the promotion of carpet, readymade garments and pashmina.
Saakha said that NUSACCI is always ready to collaborate with the Government of Nepal for promotional activities to boost export to the USA.
Another major issue discussed during the meeting was the Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) with the USA done in 2011 under which there is a provision of technical assistance but the private sector is not getting the benefit as envisaged in the agreement, the statement added.
Nepal is enjoying duty free entry of 77 goods to the USA. “In fact, 5 items categorically cover 77 different HS code items,” the statement further said.
Other issues discussed during the courtesy visit included the importance of compensation law, Intellectual Property Right (IPR), attracting American investment in the hydropower sector, promotional activities for export in collaboration with GON.
During the meeting, NUSACCI General Secretary Prof Dr Gandhi Pandit said that legal regime and enabling environment play a crucial role in attracting American investment in Nepal.
The meeting was also attended by NUSACCI board members Brindaban Man Pradhanang, Rajani Rana and Sunil Rajbhandari.