Nepal-Australia sign Water resource management cooperation agreement «

Nepal-Australia sign Water resource management cooperation agreement

Nepal and Australia on Tuesday signed a five-year memorandum of understanding (MoU) on Cooperation in Water Resource Management.
The MoU has been signed during the second bilateral consultation mechanism (BCM) between the Australia Government Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and the Government of Nepal Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) held in Canberra of Australia.
DFAT secretary Jan Adams AO PSM, and the secretary of the Water and Energy Commission Secretariat Dinesh Kumar Ghimire signed the five-year memorandum on behalf of their respective countries.
Under the MoU, Australia will provide training, technical assistance and share internationally recognised expertise on water governance. It will complement’s Australia’s existing partnership with the International Center for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) to strengthen transboundary river basin management, localise climate action and promote green livelihoods, aligned to Government of Nepal’s transition to Green, Resilient and inclusive Development (GRID) for sustainable recovery, growth and jobs.
The BCM was co-chaired by DFAT’s deputy secretary of Geostrategic Group Justin Hayhurst and secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Bharat Raj Paudyal.
DFAT’s deputy secretary Hayhurst was pleased to open the second meeting of the Bilateral Consultation Mechanism and thanked secretary Paudyal and the Nepal delegation for travelling to Australia. During his opening remarks deputy secretary Hayhurst welcomed Australia and Nepal’s strong people-to-people links with over 120,000 Nepali calling Australia home. He also congratulated Nepal on its recent democratic local elections and reiterated the two countries’ strong commitment to democracy, domestically and internationally. “Australia supports a free, open and resilient Indo-Pacific and the international rules-based order,” he said, welcoming Nepal’s strategic outlook.
Both sides, on the occasion, also noted mutual climate change and energy challenges and the importance of achieving net-zero emissions. In addition to talks on Nepal’s development priorities and future cooperation agenda, Australia undertook to share its expertise in forest fire management, and search as rescue initiatives through a new package of development support.
The Bilateral Consultation Mechanism was established in 2017 between the Australia Government Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and the Government of Nepal Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The two sides also reviewed the bilateral relations between Nepal and Australia and exchanged views on further strengthening the bilateral relations and cooperation in different fields including education, energy, investment, trade, tourism, technology transfer, migration, cooperation in climate action, and disaster risk reduction, among others. Both sides agreed to prioritise the exchange of high-level visits, promote people to people contacts, and facilitate trade, investment and transfer of technology. They also discussed cooperation in multilateral forums, including the exchange of experiences in UN Peace keeping operations.
While appreciating Australian cooperation to Nepal, foreign secretary Paudyal requested the Australian side to place Nepal as a priority country for Australian aid, support for post-Covid economic recovery, graduation from the LDC status, and realize the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development (SDG), and consider issuing visa services from the Australian Embassy in Kathmandu.
Bilateral Consultation Mechanism between Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Nepal and Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Australia was established on 14 July, 2017 and its first meeting was held in Kathmandu on 16 August 2018.