Finance Minister Instructs Nepal’s Ambassadors to Promote Investment Summit

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Finance Minister Instructs Nepal’s Ambassadors to Promote Investment Summit

March 31: Finance Minister Barshman Pun has instructed Nepali ambassadors and heads of diplomatic missions abroad to focus on the investment summit to be held next month. The government is holding the Third Nepal Investment Summit on April 28 and 29 next month.

Finance Minister Pun has been holding investment summit-focused discussions along with diplomatic meetings as a preparation for the summit. With almost a month left for the investment summit, Finance Minister Pun held a virtual meeting with Nepalese ambassadors and heads of diplomatic missions in more than 40 countries on Saturday and directed them to disseminate information to related countries about the summit and make efforts to create an investment environment.

"The Investment Summit is about the honor, reputation and pride of the nation," Pun said, "On behalf of the prime minister, I request you all to attend this summit in the next one month."

Minister Pun informed that invitations have already been sent to foreign development partners, big investors, potential investors, and high-ranking government officials and also urged the Nepalese ambassadors and delegation heads to prepare and send a list of those who are sure to attend the summit.

Finance Minister Pun said that the government has initiated policy reforms as well as procedural and legal amendments to create an investment-friendly environment in Nepal.

Discussions are also going on about reforming 12 laws and making some bilateral agreements. "Inform the investors and government agencies about the efforts being made to make investment-friendly laws in Nepal," Minister Pun told the envoys. Frequent change of government has been a matter of concern for investors.

Last month, the power equation changed and a new government was formed with CPN (Maoist Centre), CPN (UML) and Rastriya Swatantra Party. However, Minister Pun said that since the original leadership of the government is the same and only a few ministers who were under the old coalition have changed, they should also try to assure the international community that there is no change in the investment summit and investment policy.

Informing that the government prioritizes the use of knowledge, skills and technology acquired by non-resident Nepalis, Minister Pun asked the ambassadors and the head of the delegation to convey this message as well.

The virtual meeting was attended by Chief Secretary Baikuntha Aryal, Foreign Secretary Sewa Lamsal and Chief Executive Officer of Nepal Investment Board Sushil Bhatt. Nepalese ambassadors and heads of missions to the United States of America, Britain, Australia, Germany, Bangladesh, India, Oman, South Korea and Malaysia also attended the meeting.

Although the government has pledged to amend dozens of laws and conduct the country rating before the investment summit, it has not been able to expedite these works until now.

Earlier, a committee formed by the government under the coordination of Secretary Ek Narayan Aryal had suggested that about a dozen laws should be amended for creating an investment-friendly environment in the country.

The list of laws to be amended include Foreign Investment and Technology Transfer Act, Industrial Enterprises Act, Special Economic Zone Act, Forest Act, National Parks and Wildlife Protection Act, Electronic Transactions Act, Land Acquisition Act, Civil Aviation Act and others. However, it is highly doubtful that these laws will be amended by the parliament before the investment summit.

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