Nepal Trade and Foreign Investment

By | July 24, 2022


  • Business Relationships
  • Foreign direct investment
  • FTAs ​​and Treaties
  • Development Cooperation
  • Prospective fields of study (MOP)

Business relations

Trade relations with the EU

Nepal is classified as a Least Developed Country (LDC) by the UN and falls under the “Everything But Arms” preferential regime in relation to the EU. The trade balance with the EU is negative and amounted to EUR 125 million for 2021. The EU mainly imports textiles and clothing from Nepal and exports mainly machinery and transport equipment, chemicals, agricultural products and other products. On the EU side, Nepal is the 153rd partner country in terms of total trade value.

2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
Exports from the EU (million EUR) 273.8 393.7 184.1 127.9 195.6
Imports into the EU (million EUR) 70.5 69.6 68.4 53.6 70.6
Balance with the EU (million EUR) -203.3 -324.1 -115.7 -74.3 -125

Source: European Commission

Trade relations with the Czech Republi c

Foreign trade between the Czech Republic and Nepal is almost negligible. Current data is not available for 2021.

2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
Exports from the Czech Republic (billion CZK) 0 0.1 0.1 0.1 ON
Imports to the Czech Republic (billion CZK) 0 0.1 0.1 0.1 ON
Balance with the Czech Republic (billion CZK) 29 -0.1 0 0 ON


Trade relations with countries outside the E U

Data on trade relations with countries outside the EU are not available for 2021. In 2020, the balance of foreign trade with countries outside the EU was negative and amounted to EIR 7.58 billion. Nepal mainly imports petroleum, gold, iron and steel, garments, pharmaceuticals, cement, electronic equipment, food and vehicles. Nepal’s main import partner is India, which accounts for 58 percent of all imports. The most important exports from Nepal are soybean oil, knotted carpets, non-retail synthetic staple yarn, nutmeg, nutmeg and cardamom, and palm oil, exporting mainly to India ($611 million), the United States ($90 million), Germany (US$26 million), the United Kingdom (US$17.1 million), and China (US$1million).

2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
Exports from countries outside the EU (million EUR) 342.6 273.7 625.2 594 ON
Imports to countries outside the EU (million EUR) 8,555.1 10,844.3 10,445.0 8 178.2 ON
Balance with non-EU countries (million EUR) -8,212.5 -10,570.7 -9,819.8 -7,584.3 ON

Source: EIU, Eurostat

Foreign direct investment

Historically, Nepal has attracted little foreign direct investment (FDI) compared to comparable countries. According to World Bank data, FDI as a percentage of GDP was 0.4% for Nepal in 2014–18, compared to 1.6% for South Asia and 3.5% for low-income countries (LICs) globally. Annual FDI inflows to Nepal, which rose from US$ 125 million in FY 2016/17 to US$ 168 million in FY 2017/18, declined to US$ 116 million in 2018/19 and rose again to US$ 167.7 million in 2019/20. While the interest of foreign, especially Chinese, investors is growing in Nepal, the pandemic may slow down FDI in Nepal in the near future. A report by the Central Bank of Nepal shows that the total volume of foreign direct investment in Nepal as of July 2019 was USD 1.62 billion.

FTAs and treaties

Treaties with the EU

  • In 1995, the EU-Nepal Cooperation Agreement was concluded, which entered into force in 1996.

Contracts with the Czech Republic

  • Agreement on cooperation between the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Czech Republic and the Ministry of Finance of the Government of Nepal (Kathmandu 29 January 2015, entry into force 3/2016)
  • Agreement between the Government of the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic and the Royal Government of Nepal on cooperation in the field of health care and medical science (Kathmandu 1.3.1979, entry into force 1.3.1979)

Developmental cooperation

The EU is Nepal’s largest development donor. Priority points of cooperation are development programs, support of the education system, management of public finances, fight against EU corruption. In 2020, the EU prepared a EUR 75 million support package for Nepal to stimulate the economy and the demand for labor. The EU also suspended debt service within the G20. The EU and Nepal also signed funding agreements in 2020 on Nepal’s multi-sectoral action plan for nutrition (€22 million) and the support program for provinces and local governments (€33 million). The European Commission has also provided EUR 20 million to support the Nepalese school sector, which will be implemented through budget support and additional technical assistance. Cooperation in the field of higher education is taking place at a very good level,

As part of the development cooperation agenda in Nepal in 2022, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic supported one small local project, which aims to support women’s entrepreneurship in rural areas in Nepal and increase their digital literacy through computer classroom equipment.

Prospective fields of study (MOP)

Nepal is not included in the ILO.


Practical telephone numbers (emergency services, police, firemen, information lines, etc.)

Telephone numbers for police, fire and first aid vary by area. These can be obtained from your local police station.

  • Kathmandu: (Nepal – Kathmandu: 00977 – 1) Police: 100, 110 and 120
  • Himalayan Rescue Association: 4440292/3
  • Foreign Police: 4222453 and 42223590

Important web links and contacts

Government of Nepal, links to ministries:

Department of Industries:

Nepal Business Directory:

Ministry of Industry:

Ministry of Finance:

Ministry of Health and Population:

Immigration Office:

Federation of NP Chambers of Commerce and Industry:

Nepal Tourism Board:

Central Bureau of Statistics:

Central Bank, Nepal Rastra Bank:

Nepal Trade