President of Chaudhary Group raises Nepal blockade at Commonwealth forum

President of Chaudhary Group Raises Nepal Blockade at Commonwealth Forum

Kathmandu, November 26: President of Chaudhary Group and President Emeritus of Confederation of Nepalese Industries, Mr. Binod Chaudhary, has drawn the attention of the international community, stating that the ongoing blockade on Nepal will create extreme humanitarian crisis.

Addressing the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting 2015 in Malta on Thursday, President Chaudhary said the country, already devastated by earthquake, is pushed into economic crisis by the ongoing blockade. He was addressing on the topic of Connecting Asia: Accelerating Regional Integration and Development.

President Chaudhary said the blockade has crippled daily lives of people and virtually shut down industries and businesses.

Heads of nation, heads of government, and private sector leaders from around 80 countries are participating in the Meeting. Although Nepal is not a Commonwealth country, President Chaudhary was invited as a guest.

President Chaudhary stressed on liberal leadership for regional integration. “While talking about regional integration in South Asia, it will be possible only if the leading country India shows liberal attitude towards its neighbors,” Chaudhary said, making comparison with European Union. “India should play as liberal role as Germany did during European Union’s establishment.”

President Chaudhary expressed concerns on land-locked country Nepal’s deprivation from free transport facility. The ongoing blockade on Nepal has created severe crisis of life-saving drugs, cooking gas, and fuel, President Chaudhary informed the international community.

Stating that there Nepal received support from nowhere towards ending the blockade, President Chaudhary said this situation has put the relevance and usefulness SAARC under question.

“SAARC is known as the weakest regional organization in the world. Despite occasional good initiatives and plans, the region has always lagged behind on regional integration and development due to mutual disagreements,” President Chaudhary said.

“Development of infrastructure is a precondition for the development of SAARC, which is home to 40 percent of the world’s poor. But due to mutual distrust and lack of cooperation, there hasn’t been any progress toward building infrastructure such as cross-country road networks, and institutions such as SAARC bank.”

Stressing on the need of transportation network for regional development and integration, Chaudhary said in lack of it the cost of production and distribution among SAARC nations is high. Development of inter-national road network and unrestricted access to transportation is inevitable for the region that is home to land-locked countries like Nepal and Bhutan, Mr. Chaudhary said.

The Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting is an important international forum in which the heads of nation and government discuss common challenges, new opportunities, and priorities.

November 26, 2015