KATHMANDU: Foreign Secretary Sewa Lamsal has stated that the government is making internal preparations to address the challenges Nepal will face upon its graduation from the Least Developed Country (LDC) status in 2026.
Speaking at an interaction organized to commemorate the 6th anniversary of the Center for Diplomacy and Development (CDD), Lamsal said that all state agencies were gearing up for Nepal’s graduation as it would lose certain privileges post-graduation. As Nepal will no longer enjoy facilities like duty-free and quota-free exports to the US, Europe, and other countries, Lamsal said that the government is seeking solutions to address this issue. “We will face many challenges upon our graduation, but the government will be prepared to address them,” Lamsal said. “The government is preparing to host the Nepal Investment Summit in April. Likewise, it remains committed to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.”
Lamsal also said that the government has effectively communicated Nepal’s vulnerability to climate change and global warming to the international community, emphasizing the urgent need to minimize such impacts. She added that the government is focusing on various areas such as sustainable economic development, environmental conservation, trade facilitation, and economic diplomacy.
Founder Chairman of CCD and former ambassador Mohan Krishna Shrestha said Nepal must make necessary preparations as it approaches graduation from LDC status, especially considering the urgent need to mitigate the impacts of climate change on the Himalayas.
During the event, former commerce secretary Chandra Ghimire made a presentation on the possible challenges that Nepal will face upon graduation from LDC status. Among others, he proposed promoting manufacturing and tourism industries to strengthen the economy. “The government should clearly define the roles of the three tiers of government as it moves forward,” he added.
Dr. Maheshwar Dhakal, a joint secretary at the Ministry of Forest and Environment, said Nepal needs to engage in dialogues with other Himalayan nations and advocate for the Himalayan economy as a common agenda in international forums.
Former president of the Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industries, Bhawani Rana, said Nepal should first study possible challenges that it will face upon graduation from LDC status and devise plans to address them.