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Policy / Strategy

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Project Relevance & NIA

Relevance of NECTRADE Project

The Government of Nepal, Ministry of Commerce and Supplies (MoCS) has taken steps to put in place the Enhanced Integrated Framework (EIF), a global initiative for trade related capacity building of LDCs. As a Tier 1 Project of Enhanced Integrated Framework (EIF) Nepal, Nepal Enhanced Capacities for Trade and Development (NECTRADE) Project is implemented by the MoCS to facilitate EIF activities in Nepal. The Government launched Nepal Trade Integration Strategy (NTIS) in June 2010 to support EIF implementation process and has also established a National Implementation Arrangement (NIA) for EIF implementation in Nepal. The NIA comprises of a National Steering Committee (NSC), led by the Chief Secretary, Government of Nepal; a Focal Point (Secretary, Ministry of Commerce and Supplies); a National Implementation Unit (NIU), led by the Joint Secretary, Planning and International Trade Cooperation Division (PITCD), among others. The NIU is responsible for coordinating EIF activities and their implementation at the national level.

National Implementation Arrangement (NIA) in Nepal

The NIA means the national EIF implementation structures in Nepal consisting of NSC, FP, NIU, DF, WTO Focal Points among others.

The GoN has established a National Steering Committee (NSC) under the Chairpersonship of Chief Secretary. Secretaries at different ministries, high-level officials from the concerned agencies and representatives from the private sector are also members of the NSC. The NSC monitor the overall EIF processes and activities, including trade mainstreaming into national development plans, ensures effective coordination and buy-in among various Government institutions, the private sector, civil society and other EIF stakeholders. In addition, NSC monitor EIF implementation issues and supervises the work of the National Implementation Unit (NIU), assesses the DTIS and its Action Matrix and approves prioritized interventions ensuring, if needed, the subsequent endorsement by the Government, provides national space for discussion and identification of DTIS priorities and issues to be taken into account in the DTIS updating.

Commerce Secretary of Government of Nepal was appointed as the EIF Focal Point (FP). FP oversees the functioning of the NIU and arrangement of its staffing and operations. FP works closely with the relevant line Ministries, the Donor Facilitator (DF), the ES, other donors and IF Agencies to ensure that TRTA projects are mainstreamed into the PRSP and respond to DTIS priorities. Please see Annex (3) for duties and responsibilities of FP.

A National Implementation Unit (NIU) was created at the Ministry of Commerce and Supplies (MoCS). Head of the Planning and International Trade Cooperation Division MoCS is designated as the NIU Coordinator. NIU works closely with other designated focal points in Government Ministries/Departments, particularly Ministry of Finance, National Planning Commission, Ministry of Agriculture Development, Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation and other trade-related ministries/institutions (public, private and civil society) to ensure coordination at all stages of the EIF process. It is proposed that the existing networks of WTO focal points be used and strengthened, so as to create an “extended NIU” composed of the NIU and a network of focal points. Focal points will need to be integrated in all capacity development plans for the NIU, in particular, but not limited to, the EIF Tier 1 capacity development action plan.

NIU will also monitor the implementation of Tier 1 and Tier 2 projects under NSC/FP supervision and reports on progress to the FP/NSC/ES. The NIU shall also be responsible to prepare its multi-year work plan and detailed annual operational plans. NIU will be supported by long-term and short-term consultants, as and when required. Please see Annex (4) for responsibilities of NIU. As the institutional set-up for the implementation of Nepal’s trade integration strategy is developed, the NIU will also become the Trade SWAp Secretariat once this structure is established under the ministry.

In addition, to provide feedbacks on specific issues to NSC and FP, five inter-ministerial Technical Committees (TCs) have been established under the NSC. TCs are chaired by the Joint-Secretaries of the designated ministries. Similarly, to provide inputs on specific issues, TCs can constitute various technical sub-committees (TSC). The structure and numbers of the TCs will be reviewed using the NTIS recommendations. In addition, following the good practices established during the NTIS development, the TCs will include private sector representatives as well as development partner representatives. This could ensure a better coordination between the working groups created under the Nepal Business Forum – Public/Private Dialogue and the actions plans and project proposals developed by the Technical Committees. Technical Committees work will need to be structured and coordinated so as to ensure a smooth implementation of the NTIS recommendations. In that regard, composition and focus of the TCs will be reviewed after the NTIS validation so as to make them inclusive and dedicated working structures. Development partners will be associated with the work of each TCs ensuring proper engagement and buy-in in actions recommended by TC.

Initially, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) had been unanimously selected as the Donor Facilitator (DF) in Nepal. In November 2010, the Government of Germany (German Embassy in Nepal) has been selected DF and is currently providing its support to NECTRADE Project.

In order to fulfill the commitments that Nepal has made by virtue of joining the WTO, around 16 WTO Focal Points have been established three years back in various trade related line ministries and agencies. These WTO focal points also help in the smooth implementation of NTIS activities and help in mainstreaming trade into the plans and activities of their respective ministries and departments. MoCS conducts various orientation and training programs for these agencies to help them better understand the international obligations and opportunities in the international trading system.

Internalizing trade by the WTO focal points into its priorities and work-plan helps MoCS in its efforts of trade promotion. In addition, these focal points provide an important feedback and update to the MoCS in different meetings and interaction programs.

Copyright 2014. EIF Nepal