First Business News Portal in English from Nepal
KATHMANDU: The country’s lockdown, prohibitory orders and the natural calamities that the country had to go through have affected trade with China significantly this fiscal year.
Both imports and exports with the northern neighbor have dropped sharply by 40 percent and 54 percent, respectively, in the first two months of the current fiscal year in comparison to the corresponding period of the last fiscal year 2019/20.
According to the Trade and Export Promotion Center, the country exported goods worth Rs 29 million in the first two months of the last fiscal year. Compared to that figure the country was able to export goods worth only Rs 13.09 million in between mid-July and mid-September this fiscal.
Meanwhile, the county had imported goods worth Rs 40.56 billion in the first two months of the last fiscal which dropped to Rs 24.31 billion in the corresponding period of this year.
According to Nepal Trans Himalaya Border Commerce Association’s President, Bachhu Paudel, the country’s trade with China was affected due to the coronavirus pandemic. He said that a majority of the goods are imported from Rasuwagadhi-Kyirongborder point but due to the COVID-19 trade was affected a lot this year.
“A majority of the goods are imported through the Rasuwagadhi customs point before Dashain but compared to the previous years, imports have been dismal this fiscal,” he said, adding, “Not even 10 percent of what used to be imported previously has been imported for this Dashain.”
The Rasuwagadhi and Tatopani border points could not operate smoothly even after the lockdown and prohibitory orders were lifted because of floods and snowfall. Although the customs points have resumed services imports have not been encouraging.
Around 2,000 containers are still stuck on the Chinese side. Traders had started bringing their goods from Tatopani but the border point has been closed again. The traders tried to reroute their goods through Rasuwagadhi but again this customs office also closed down as its employees tested coronavirus positive.
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