Ethiopian, Nepali private sectors urged to team up

- Post Report, Kathmandu
Though the current volume of trade between Nepal and Ethiopia is negligible, prospects are huge - Asfaw Dingamo

Jun 15, 2017-The Ethiopian envoy to India has urged cooperation between the private sectors of Ethiopia and Nepal for the development of agro processing, manufacturing, chemicals, pharmaceuticals and textiles and apparels sectors, among others.

“Nepal and Ethiopia can do much in various sectors given their status as rising 

economies of Asia and Africa,” said Ambassador Asfaw Dingamo who arrived in Kathmandu to open the Ethiopian Consulate.

Rajendra Giri, chairman of Kailash Development Bank, has been appointed Honorary Consul of Ethiopia in Nepal.

“Our economies are growing, so the private sectors of the two countries can tap the opportunities in each other’s country,” he said while calling to boost trade and commerce ties as “Ethiopia could be the gateway for Asia in Africa”.

Though the current volume of trade between Nepal and Ethiopia is negligible, prospects are huge, he said, adding that the establishment of a consulate in Nepal would further expand trade and commerce.

“As soon as I arrived here, I put forward some proposals to Nepal’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs for cultural exchange and tourism promotion. I have also proposed to set up a bilateral consultative mechanism between the foreign ministries of Ethiopia and Nepal with the aim of strengthening bilateral ties and scaling up trade, business and other opportunities.”

He said that Ethiopia was also interested in signing an air service agreement with Nepal. Ethiopian Airlines is considered to be one of the most successful airlines in Africa. 

“There are no plans to operate direct flights between Kathmandu and Addis Ababa immediately, but we can reach an agreement on code sharing where Nepali airlines can have some kind of tie-up with Ethiopian airlines and carry Nepali passengers.”

He added that avoidance of double taxation, visa waiver for diplomats and officials, and visa on arrival for nationals from both countries would further boost bilateral ties and create an environment for opening further avenues.

Nepal and Ethiopia are both landlocked and home to diverse communities, and they have been cooperating in various multilateral forums. Nepal helped Ethiopia in its bid to become a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council and voted for an Ethiopian as the WHO director general. 

“We are big troop contributing countries to UN peacekeeping operations, so the time has come to scale up and strengthen bilateral relations,” the ambassador said. More agreements are in the pipeline, and the initiatives that are currently being taken will open up more vistas for Nepalis, he added.

Published: 15-06-2017 09:18

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