Nepal- Netherlands Relations

Diplomatic Relations

Nepal and the Netherlands established diplomatic relations on 2 April 1960. The Embassy of Nepal in Belgium is concurrently accredited to the Netherlands and the Netherlands Embassy in New Delhi is accredited to Nepal. Nepal and the Netherlands enjoy friendly, cordial and cooperative bilateral relations at both the Government and people-to-people levels. The Netherlands has an honorary consulate in Kathmandu.

High Level Visits

Exchange of visits at high levels has contributed to the growth of bilateral relations between the two countries. Late King Mahendra paid a state visit to the Kingdom of the Netherlands in 1967. Late Crown Prince Dipendra paid an official visit to the Netherlands in June 1998.

From the Netherlands’ side, Prince Bernhard visited Nepal in 1973, 1975 and 1986. King Willem-Alexander paid an official visit to Nepal in January 1997. Former Development Cooperation Minister Mr. Johannes P. Pronk visited Nepal in 1996. Ms. Lilianne Ploumen, Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation visited Nepal on 8-9 June 2015 some weeks after the devastating earthquakes.

Development Cooperation

The Dutch economic cooperation to Nepal started in 1976. Currently, much of its development support to Nepal is channelled through multilateral entities such as the UN and the EU as well as various Dutch NGOs and INGOs. The focus of Dutch development cooperation to Nepal is in the areas of health, environment, disaster preparedness and relief, decentralized local governance, bio-diversity and renewable energy.

The Netherlands Government has been providing some fellowships annually to Nepali scholars to pursue higher studies and trainings in the Netherlands. This cooperation has contributed in enhancing skills and knowledge of scholars, academics and professionals in the areas of development, governance, agro-forestry and water management.

Trade and Investment

Nepal exports carpet, woollen goods, ready-made garments, handmade papers, handicrafts etc., to the Netherlands. Similarly, Nepal imports textile materials, machinery and parts, industrial raw materials, electrical goods, research equipment etc., from the Netherlands. In view of the major role being played by the Netherlands in the EU, the prospects of cooperative relations between Nepal and the EU is expected to receive added impetus through excellent economic and trade relations with the Netherlands. Trade figure between the two countries for the last five years is as follows:

Value in NRs.

Year Export Import Trade balance
2015 496,519,131 1,343,237,184 -846,718,053
2016 439,016,446 1,721,261,292 -1,282,244,846
2017 413,648,401 1,831,206,687 -1,417,558,286
2018 428,946,007 2,170,491,280 -1,741,545,273
2019 160,903,965 810,711,528 -649,807,563

(Source: TEPC)

On investment, some industries in the areas of hotel, security service and tissue culture have been operating in Nepal under Nepal Netherlands joint venture. As of July 2019, a total of 86 joint ventures were established in Nepal with the Dutch investment of NRs. 1.8 billion which helped to create 4,265 jobs.

Tourism and people to people contacts

Nepal is a favourite tourism destination for the Dutch, especially for those interested in adventure tourism such mountaineering and trekking. The trend of the arrival of the Dutch tourists in Nepal is as follows:

Year 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
No. of Tourists 4324 11,453 13,393 15,353 15,032

Source: Tourism Statistics

Nepali living in the Netherlands

About 2,000 in number, Nepali Diaspora in the Netherlands are yet another link in our bilateral relations. These people are contributing to the cultural diversity and richness of the Dutch society and economy by their creative and productive enterprises.

August 2020

Embassy of Nepal