Second edition of Nepal-Bangladesh Business Forum ends «

Second edition of Nepal-Bangladesh Business Forum ends

The Asian Institute of Diplomacy and International Affairs (AIDIA) and Embassy of People’s Republic of Bangladesh jointly hosted the second edition of the “Nepal-Bangladesh Business Forum (NBBF)” with a theme “Beyond Bilateralism: Cooperation for Prosperity” on Saturday at Kathmandu, Nepal.
The NBBF forum is a bilateral platform policy makers, diplomats, business leaders/ practitioners /experts, entrepreneurs, scholars, media among others to discuss various issues related to bilateral economic cooperation including trade, tourism, connectivity, energy.
In his welcome remarks, Sunil KC, Chief Executive Officer, AIDIA, recalled the important contribution made by first NBBF of 2016 for strengthening bilateral cooperation and firmly expressed 2nd edition will equally contribute too.
Likewise, Iqbal Sobhan Chowdhury, Media Advisor to Prime Minister of Bangladesh, on the occasion, delivered the inaugural speech by underlining the strong diplomatic ties and smooth bilateral relations between Nepal and Bangladesh. Even though commerce between Nepal and Bangladesh have steadily increased in the recent past, trade potential and investment opportunities have not been exploited at their maximum, he added, forum like this will contribute to meet such potential.
The first session comprised of Jalal Ahmed, Additional Secretary of Government of Bangladesh and Chairperson Nepal, Bangladesh Bank Limited), Dr. Bindu N. Lohani, Former Vice-President of the Asian Development Bank, Deependra Bahadur Kshetry, Former Governor-Nepal Rastra Bank, and Purushottam Ojha, Former Secretary of Ministry of Commerce and Supplies), discussed on the session title “Role of Banks in Facilitating Bilateral Trade, Investment and Economic Growth”.
During the discussion, they highlighted the multilateral and bilateral banks have a fundamental role to play to reinforce economic cooperation and integration. In numerous strategic areas where bank involvement is necessary, such as physical connectivity and infrastructure development, trade and investments facilitation through tariff negotiations, assistance in financial market expansion and cooperation on public goods provision, they focused on.
The second session focused on the expansion of Bangladesh-Nepal connectivity with comprising Ananta Acharya , Director General, Department of Railways, Ali Ahmed, CEO, Bangladesh Foreign Trade Institute and Shyam KC , Research and Development Director, AIDIA stressed Nepal and Bangladesh thoroughly need to explore the efficient connectivity corridor as well as port facilities.
The reasons of low level of trade between the two countries have been drawn up the supply and demand mismatch and insufficient connectivity infrastructures, they argued. Bilateral and regional transit agreements must be pushed up in order to promote trade and business. Roads network, rail infrastructure and sea port access enhancement are the key for a strengthened economic cooperation, they added.
In her closing remarks, Ambassador of Bangladesh to Nepal Mashfee Binte Shams said taking into account about the complaints of business community and entrepreneurs we decided to focus on banking and connectivity issue in second edition of NBBF.
“If these sectors represent the main improvement priorities, they also demonstrate the growing trades and businesses interests between Nepal and Bangladesh,” She said, emphasizing on the role, importance and continuation such forum to solve trade issues and strengthen the economic ties between two countries.