US to support Nepal in increasing production of exportable goodsThe virtual meeting discussed customs and trade, intellectual property, trademark and e-commerce, financial service, investment promotion, trade concessions provided by the US to Nepal and different subjects regarding investment.
The US has agreed to provide technical support for capacity building of Nepali producers in order to increase the volume of exportable goods during the fifth meeting of the Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) Council held virtually between Nepal and the US on Tuesday.
The Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) meeting led by Baikuntha Aryal, secretary at the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Supplies and Christopher Wilson, assistant US Trade Representative for South and Central-Asia, also agreed for mutual coordination to foster a digital economy in Nepal based on digital computing technologies.
Although the trade of 77 Nepali products, like carpets, pashmina and travel goods enjoy preferential treatment from the US, Nepal has not been able to take advantage of the facility. The country has not been able to produce them on a large scale, properly market them, enhance the quality and ensure assurance of the standard of the products.
In 2015, the US granted duty-free access to 66 products by enforcing the Trade Preferences Act and later it extended that to 77 products. Nepal will be receiving this facility through 2025. These products include certain carpets and pashmina, headgear, shawls, scarves and travel goods.
According to a press statement issued by the Industry Ministry, Nepal and the US will work together in promoting digital trade to grow the economy.
During the meeting, Nepal pointed out that the investment environment had improved in the country and requested the US to increase their investment.
Similarly, the US highlighted the problems in exporting pork and poultry to Nepal and the Nepali delegation responded by saying that no ban has been imposed on the import of pork and poultry. The Nepali side said that pork and poultry products from the US need to be certified by USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Services and accredited by Nepal's Department of Food Technology and Quality Control before they are allowed to be imported to Nepal.
The US welcomed Nepal’s progress in implementing a labour law that preserves labour rights. The US commented that more entrepreneurs and investors would be encouraged to invest in Nepal if the country improved intellectual property preservation and implementation.
The meeting also decided to hold bilateral talks in the coming days and agreed to organise the 6th TIFA Council meeting in Nepal.
The virtual meeting discussed customs and trade, intellectual property, trademark and e-commerce, financial service, investment promotion, trade concessions provided by the US to Nepal and different subjects regarding investment.
TIFA is a bilateral pact aimed to expand trade, increase investment and technical cooperation and strengthen the economic ties between two countries which Nepal and the US signed in April 2011.