US expresses interest in closer collaboration with Nepal, says Finance Minister Pun

KATHMANDU: Finance Minister Barshaman Pun, who returned from his visit to the United States, highlighted the keen interest of the US government, private sector, and development partners in strengthening collaboration with Nepal.

Addressing journalists at Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA), Minister Pun described his trip to the 2024 Spring Joint Meetings of the World Bank Group and the International Monetary Fund in Washington DC as successful.

During his visit, Minister Pun engaged in fruitful discussions with US government officials and representatives of the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), who expressed their eagerness to enhance cooperation with Nepal. "Overall, this visit has been successful.

The US government, private sector, and development partners have shown a willingness to work more closely with the Nepal government," he stated.

Minister Pun also noted the significant interest among industrialists and businesspersons in the upcoming investment summit in Nepal.

He revealed discussions with renowned companies such as Coca-Cola, Meta, and Disneyland, indicating growing investor interest in Nepal.

Furthermore, Minister Pun highlighted discussions on the Millennium Challenge Nepal Account Development Committee (MCA-Nepal), emphasizing the ongoing collaboration on power transmission lines and road projects with MCC grant assistance.

He outlined the agreement reached with the World Bank on the financial structure of the 1,063 MW Upper Arun Hydropower Project, indicating progress in securing concessional loans for the project.

Additionally, Minister Pun discussed potential co-financing opportunities for the 635 MW Dudhkoshi Reservoir Hydropower Project, signaling a positive outlook for infrastructure development in Nepal.

During his stay in the US, Minister Pun engaged in interactions with high-level officials and representatives of various organizations, including the World Bank, International Finance Corporation, IMF, USAID, and the US Chamber of Commerce, advocating for investment opportunities in Nepal.

Highlighting Nepal's commitment to clean energy production and its potential as an attractive destination for international investors, Minister Pun reiterated the importance of collaboration and investment in Nepal's development endeavors.

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