Lobby underway for continuing Germany assistance
Various non-government organizations, private sector and individuals based in German have initiated lobby for continuing with Germany development cooperation to Nepal.
The move came at a time when Nepal’s time-tested friend Federal Republic of Germany has started a process to gradually axe its bilateral assistance to Nepal from 2024. The issue is being discussed at the Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) of Germany – which has been aiding Nepal mainly in the areas of economic development, good governance and poverty alleviation.
It is critically important for Nepal as it would decide the fate of bilateral development cooperation received from Germany for the past six decades. However, the Germany ministry’s parliamentary committee has started the process to pull its hand of bilateral cooperation from other 24 countries across the globe including Nepal by 2030.
If the decision takes place, there will be no new contract for development cooperation from 2024 in Nepal and the time interval will be utilized for completing the ongoing projects.
With this the Germany aid will be limited and channelized only through the European Union’s Lump sum assistance to Nepal. The Germany ministry has been annually channelizing 25 million Euros to support Nepal’s efforts for development and good governance.
Nevertheless, the Germany-based German-Nepal Friendship Association and a local NGO namely Long Yang took the joint initiative to submit appeal and open letter to the BMZ to perpetuate aid to Nepal, shared Association chair Ram Pratap Thapa.
The appeal was signed by 1,500 well-wishers of Nepal while 50 Germany-based NGOs that have been lending support to Nepal have also jointly urged the ministry to continue with the cooperation to Nepal, Thapa added. Earlier, the Nepal German Academic Association on May 23 had organized a virtual meeting of the representatives from NGOs and private sector and requested the ministry to not reach to a decision to stop aid.
It is noted that the government of Nepal has made necessary homework to this effect acting on the informal communication regarding the aid cut-off. Jenny Ludwig, a representative of Long Yang, said that the Germany assistance to Nepal was not limited to economic front but was important for advancement of new skills and knowledge and development of new technology.
She further noted that Germany had substantially aided Nepal to her development efforts during the 61 years of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two.