Implementation of NTIS 2016 stressed

Kathmandu, October 22

The Ministry of Commerce has held discussions with stakeholder ministries and the private sector on effective implementation of the recently launched Nepal Trade Integration Strategy (NTIS), 2016, that focuses on boosting export of niche market products, trade-related infrastructure development and trade and transit facilitation for trade-led economic growth.

While chairing the meeting of Enhanced Integrated Framework (EIF) National Steering Committee on Friday, Commerce Minister Romi Gauchan Thakali highlighted the need of providing strategic guidance for effective mobilisation of domestic as well as external resources for successful implementation of NTIS 2016.

EIF is the aid for trade mechanism of World Trade Organisation to the least developed countries, which has been supporting effective implementation of NTIS.

In the meeting, the commerce minister urged all line ministries, especially Ministry of Agricultural Development, to undertake additional responsibilities since a majority of NTIS 2016-prioritised products with export potential are related to agriculture. He also asked the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to play a crucial role with regard to economic and trade diplomacy, according to a statement issued by the Ministry of Commerce.

“In the current stage of Nepali socio-economic and political situation, transformation cannot be achieved without a strong and sustainable economic growth. For that, partnership between the government and private sector is indispensable,” statement has quoted Minister Thakali as saying.

Chief Secretary Som Lal Subedi, vice chairperson of EIF Steering Committee, directed secretaries at various line ministries to engage in more proactive horizontal communication and coordination to successfully implement NTIS 2016 and ensure trade-led growth of the country.

Similarly, Commerce Secretary Naindra Prasad Upadhyay urged line ministries and private sector to continue cooperation and commitment for implementation of NTIS 2016 action matrix, as per the statement. Upadhyay also stressed that responsible agencies identified in the action matrix should take lead roles to implement actions of products and services prioritised by NTIS 2016.

“Trade Policy 2015 and recently launched NTIS 2016 have provided strategic guidance to address vibrant issues such as trade facilitation, product and value-chain development, supply capacity development for trade sector development of the country,” the statement has quoted Secretary Upadhyay as saying.

During the meeting, presidents of the Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry and the Confederation of Nepalese Industries expressed the concerns of the private sector, especially favourable and enabling environment for export-oriented industries so as to enhance the competitiveness of Nepali exports by reducing cost of production and improving quality.