Saturday, 6 March, 2021

Need to ensure affordable access to vaccines: Minister Gyawali


Kathmandu, Jan 21: Foreign Minister Pradeep Kumar Gyawali stressed the need to ensure easy and affordable access to vaccines and essential medical items in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Addressing the 17th Ministerial Meeting of Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD) held virtually under the theme, 'New Normal and Safe and Healthy Tourism' today, Minister Gyawali underscored the close cooperation among the member states and partnership with private business for fighting Covid-19 pandemic to bring all aspects of lives, livelihoods, and economies to normalcy, including the tourism sector.

"The top priority of the government of Nepal is to protect people’s lives from disease and hunger. Nepal has scrupulously been executing safety, health and sanitation protocols in all tourism-related activities focusing to save jobs and keep the economy afloat," Minister Gyawali said, adding that development and improvement of quality of infrastructures is a key to build all modes of connectivity in ACD region, narrow the development gap, and achieve equitable and inclusive growth, especially for a landlocked country like Nepal.

According to him, the enhancement of cooperation and collaboration was equally important for mitigation and adaption of the adverse impacts of climate change and natural disasters. The Minister expressed Nepal's full confidence in the principles, values and goals of the ACD. "ACD should play a significant role in strengthening mutual trust, forging common understanding, and promoting cooperation and collaboration among the Member States for peace, stability, shared development, and prosperity of the Asian nations," he argued.

A press release issued by the Foreign Ministry stated that the meeting was hosted by the Republic of Turkey, the current Chair of the ACD. The Nepali delegation led by the Foreign Minister included Foreign Secretary Bharat Raj Paudyal and senior officials of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation.

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