Nepal-Norway

Diplomatic relations

Nepal and Norway established diplomatic relations on January 26, 1973. Ever since the establishment of diplomatic relations, Nepal and Norway have been enjoying friendly and cordial relations. Norway opened its residential embassy in Kathmandu on January 12, 2000. Nepal does not have a residential embassy in Norway. The Nepalese Ambassador in Copenhagen is concurrently accredited to Norway. Prior to the establishment of Nepalese Embassy in Copenhagen, Nepalese Ambassador to the United Kingdom was concurrently accredited to Norway. Similarly, the Nepalese Honorary Consul General based in Oslo looks after the Nepalese interest in Norway.

Exchange of Visits

A Nepalese parliamentary delegation led by the then Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr. Daman Nath Dhungana, paid an official visit to Norway in November 1993.  A delegation of Nepal’s women parliamentarians visited Norway in 1997.

The then Minister for Foreign Affairs Chakra Prasad Bastola paid an official visit to Norway at the invitation of the Norwegian Foreign Minister from 7 to 9 September 2000.The then Rt. Hon. Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ paid an official visit to Norway on March 29-31, 2009.

The then Hon. Minister for Foreign Affairs Mr. Upendra Yadav visited Norway in April 2009 to participate in the international conference Melting Ice – Regional Dramas, Global Wake-up Call (Tromso, Norway, 28 April 2009).

From Norway, Ms. Hilde F. Johnson, Minister of International Development and Human Rights visited Nepal on November 11-14, 1999. Foreign Minister Mr. Knut Vollebaek paid an official visit to Nepal from January 11-13, 2000.

Development Minister Mr. Erik Solheim visited Nepal from 7 to 8 March 2007. Earlier he had visited Nepal on May 2-5, 2006. In capacity of Minister for Environment and Development, he again visited Nepal from 30 to 31 January 2012.

Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg paid a one-day visit to Nepal on 8 February 2008.

Minister for International Development Mr. Heikki Holmas visited Nepal on 4-5 June 2012.

Cooperation

Norway has been assisting Nepal in its development efforts for quite sometime now.  Government-to-government development cooperation commenced with the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) in 1996. In accordance with Nepal’s own priorities, Norway had chosen to concentrate its assistance on basic and primary education, hydropower and energy, human rights, decentralisation and peace support through UN agencies, good governance and private sector development (with focus on hydropower and electrification). Besides government-to-government cooperation, Norway has channelled its assistance through multilateral agencies and Non-Governmental Organizations. Nepal has been receiving assistance from regional and global funds, including support for the private sector, non-governmental and multilateral organisations, and technical assistance in specific areas.

The Government of Norway has provided NOK 30.6 million for Nepal Peace Trust Fund.

Norway annually offers NORAD fellowships to Government of Nepal in different fields of study aiming at human resources development of Nepal.

After the restoration of democracy in the country, Norway reversed the decision taken in July 2005 to reduce its support to Nepal by 10%. It continued the support to rural electrification through the ESAP programme and activities to share Norwegian experiences for peace processes was continued. It also granted aid to the National Election Observation Committee jointly with Denmark and Canada.

Trade/ Investment

The following table shows the status of Nepal’s trade with Norway during the last few years:

Value in ‘000 Rs.

Year Export Import Balance
2009 41,378,000 22,523,033 18,854,967
2010 39,987,086 28,780,335 11,206,751
2011 67,864,277 67,991,254 -126,977
2012 51,782,477 95,995,568 -44,213
2013 94,818 125,552 -30,734

(Source: TEPC, Nepal)

An agreement on the avoidance of double taxation with Norway has been signed.

Until July 2012, Norwegian firms have invested Rs. 1135 million in 12 various projects in Nepal, which generated 726 employment opportunities.

Tourism

Tourist arrival in Nepal from Norway during the last few years is as follows:
 
Year                                                    Number

2011                                                    3,240

2012                                                    3,280

Bhutanese Refugees

Norway is one of the seven Core Group countries taking the initiative on the third country resettlement of Bhutanese refugees. A number of Bhutanese refugees have been resettled there. The process of third country resettlement of the Bhutanese refugees is expected to continue for some years to come.