SAARC nations should pressure India: NCC

Kathmandu, December 5

Nepal Chamber of Commerce (NCC) has stressed that South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) member nations have to collectively put pressure on India to lift the ‘unofficial’ economic blockade on Nepal, which has threatened to result in a humanitarian crisis in the country. Though the South Asian nations had agreed to develop the region as a free trade area in 1995, obstruction in movement of goods from India to Nepal has badly affected the country.

Speaking at the ‘Buyer Seller Meet on Trade between South Asian Countries — Opportunities and Challenges’ organised by Punjab, Haryana and Delhi (PHD) Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Amritsar of Punjab today, NCC President Rajesh Kazi Shrestha highlighted that Nepal — when it has just started recovering following the massive earthquakes of April and May — is in critical stage due to the blockade.

He said that the blockade had not only affected the businesses of both countries but also put in question the common objective of SAARC member countries to move towards deeper integration through peace and prosperity.

He also underscored various investment opportunities in Nepal. Chamber representatives from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Pakistan, and Maldives had also participated in the programme, in which NCC is representing Nepal.