Nepali PM’s visit boosts friendship with Vietnam    
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Nepali PM’s visit boosts friendship with Vietnam
May 09 2019

The forthcoming visit to Vietnam by Nepali Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli and his wife and his attendance at the UN Day of Vesak 2019 from May 9-12 is hoped to further reinforce friendship between the two countries in the time ahead.

The visit comes in the context of positive developments in the time-honoured friendship, especially collaboration through the Party channel and economic-trade partnership.

Cultural and tourism cooperation as well as people-to-people exchange have progressed while the two sides have offered mutual support and collaboration at international forums, especially the UN.

Vietnam and Nepal set up their diplomatic relations on May 15, 1975 and have enjoyed sound relations across a variety of fields.
Over the past 44 years, Vietnam has provided support to Nepal, including US$50,000 in aid to help it deal with earthquake consequences in 2015. Nepal has supported Vietnam in citizen protection. Both sides are working together on the signing of an agreement on visa exemption for diplomatic and official passport holders. 

The Vietnam-Nepal Friendship Association was set up in September 2014, while the Vietnamese Honorary Consul General in Kathmandu was appointed in October 2016.

The two nations have supported and collaborated with each other at multilateral and international forums. Nepal has backed Vietnam’s market economy and candidacy for the UN Human Right Council in November 2013, the UN Economic and Social Council, and the UN Security Council in the 2020-2021 tenure.

Vietnam has supported Nepal in running for a seat at the UN Human Right Council for the 2018-2020 tenure. Nepal is also one of the founders the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB).

However, bilateral economic and trade cooperation has remained modest. By September 2018, two-way trade hit a mere US$38 million. Vietnam’s major export staples to Nepal included peppercorn and plastic products, while importing garment-textile materials, leather, and footwear. Currently, the Viettel Military Industry-Telecommunication Group is exploring investment opportunities in Nepal.

In April 2018, Nepal dispatched a business delegation to seek partnership opportunities in Vietnam and attended the Vietnam Expo 2018 in Hanoi from April 11-14.

During the visit, the Nepal Chamber of Commerce and the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry signed a memorandum of understanding on cooperation in information sharing and trade promotion.