Nepal to take part in UN summit in Addis Ababa


Nepal will call on the international community to support its endeavours in fighting poverty and achieving sustained economic development by increasing flow of both foreign direct investment (FDI) and official development assistance (ODA).

The call will be made during the four-day Third International Conference on Financing for Development, a key global summit hosted by the United Nations in the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa from July 13 to 16.

Nepal will be represented by a five-member delegation led by National Planning Commission Member Swarnim Wagle at the summit. The delegation left for Ethiopia on Saturday.

The main goal of the summit — which will bring together heads of state and government of various countries, senior government ministers, and top representatives of institutions, such as the World Bank, non-governmental organisations and business sector entities — is to seek funding sources to ‘end poverty in the world and protect the planet’.

This will set the stage for adoption of sustainable development goals (SDGs) in September. SDGs are a follow-up on Millennium Development Goals, which will expire later this year.

The conference will generally focus on nine agendas: creating a global framework for financing development; tapping domestic public resources to attain various development goals; mobilising domestic and international private investment; international development cooperation; international trade; debt and debt sustainability; addressing systemic issues; science, technology, innovation and capacity building; and data, monitoring and follow-up.

In this regard, Nepal will seek more private investment from abroad to foster economic growth on the strength of structural transformation, Wagle said. “We will also seek ODA that plays a catalytic role in leveraging tax collection and FDI. Also, ODA should help fill the knowledge gap here rather than make the country aid dependent.”

He also said Nepal will remind the international community that remittance should not be seen as an alternative for ODA. “The beneficiaries of remittances are generally households in Nepal. So, remittance cannot be considered a substitute for ODA, international capital flows or trade finance,” Wagle said.

At the conference, the country, according to Wagle, will also explain efforts being made to engage in the global value chain.

“In this era, focus should be on increasing trade of parts and components, and tradable services,” he said, adding, “For this, tariff and non-tariff barriers should be gradually reduced.”

Among others, Nepal will also seek international assistance for technological adoption, consolidation of gains made in the social sector, mitigation of risks emanating from disasters — both natural and financial — and development of resilience against disasters.

“The Conference will come up with an inter-governmentally negotiated and agreed outcome, to support the implementation of the post-2015 development agenda,” says a UN website.