Weekly Official e-Newsletter of Nepal Tourism Board
(Printable version)
September 13, 2013
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Supreme Court upholds the decision to appoint Subash Nirola as NTBs Acting CEO
NATO forms new executive committee
China says will expand railway to Nepal after Shigatse is linked to Beijing
Snow leopards in Kanchenjunga area could number 29
UNWTO approves accessible tourism recommendations

Supreme Court upholds the decision to appoint Subash Nirola as NTBs Acting CEO

The single bench of Rt. Honble Acting Chief Justic of Supreme Court  Mr. Damodar Prasad Sharma today upheld  the decision made by 187th Meeting of Executive Committee of  Nepal Tourism Board held on July 15, 2013 regarding the appointment of  Mr. Subash Nirola as Acting Chief Executive Officer of Nepal Tourism Board.  In his verdict,  Acting Chief Justic Mr. Damodar Prasad Sharma also revoked the decision made by a Justice of Appellate Court Patan on August 25, 2013 challenging the decision made by 187th Meeting of Executive Committee of  Nepal Tourism Board and ordered not to implement it. With this decision, Mr. Nirola now becomes Acting CEO of Nepal Tourism Board. With this appoint, he has now also become the Member Secretary of Nepal Tourism Board. Prior to this, he had been working in the capacity of Officiating Chief Executive Officer of Nepal Tourism Board.  Mr. Nirola joined the Nepal Tourism Board as a  Director in 2000 and was senior most Director prior to being appointed as Officiating CEO.

Commenting about it, Mr. Nirola says that he respects the decision of the Supreme Court and believes that there is the rule of law in the country. He said that he is fully committed to promote Nepals tourism in different level. Mr. Nirola did a Master of Arts in Leadership from Bellevue University, USA.

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NATO forms new executive committee

The 11th Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Nepal Association of Tour Operators (NATO) has unanimously elected a 15-member executive committee for the next three years.

According to a press statement, Ashok Pokharel and Manohar SJB Rana have been reelected to the posts of president and 1st vice-president, respectively. Bikram Pandey, Shibesh Shrestha and Bhakta Bahadur Malla have been selected 2nd, 3rd and 4th vice-presidents respectively.

Similarly, Amar Bahadur Shahi has been named general secretary while Suraj Lamichhane and Shiva Chandra Neupane has been selected secretary and treasurer, respectively. Basant Raj Mishra, Ambica Shrestha, Joy Dewan, Dorjee Sherpa, Shikhar Prasai, Jugesh Shrestha and Rupesh Joshi are the members in the new executive committee.

Earlier, the meeting endorsed the reports presented by the president, general secretary and treasurer and formulated various plans and programs of the association for the current fiscal year, according to the statement.

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China says will expand railway to Nepal after Shigatse is linked to Beijing

Luo Sang Jiang Cun, chairman of the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) of China, has assured Nepali officials that China would expand rail service to Nepal once Lhasa-Shigatse rail service comes into operation.

Luo made the commitment during a meeting with visiting Chief Secretary Leela Mani Poudel in Tibet on September 5, 2013. The Nepali delegation, led by Poudel, was in Tibet to participate at the ´14th Nepal-China´s Tibet Economic and Trade Fair -2013´ in Shigatse.

At the meeting, the Nepali delegation solicited Chinese support for the construction of Kathmandu-Lumbini rail service and linking it with Shigatse.

Shigate is being linked to Beijing with rail service within a few months.

“Feasibility study is underway for expanding rail service between Nepal and Tibet. We will immediately commence the process for implementing the plan once railway line reaches Shigatse from Beijing,” Hari Basyal, Nepalese Consul General in Lhasa, quoted Luo as saying in the meeting.

Luo also expressed commitment to extend ´meaningful support´ to Nepal for achieving the common goal of socio-economic development.

According to Basyal, chief secretary Poudel also asked Chinese government to support Nepal in development of trade infrastructures, including construction of dry ports, upgrading roads and building new railway, which are instrumental in promoting bilateral trade.

Meanwhile, Poudel and Ding Yexian, the executive vice-chairman of TAR of China, jointly inaugurated the ´14th Nepal-China´s Tibet Economic and Trade Fair -2013´ on Thursday.

On the occasion, Poudel reiterated the Nepal´s policy of not allowing anti-China activities in its soil. He also highlighted the importance of economic and trade interactions between neighboring countries for healthy bilateral relation in the age of globalization. He requested the Chinese officials to scale up economic cooperation for the development of trade related infrastructures such as port facilities and expansion of road and railway networks to link both countries.

Poudel also requested Chinese officials for simplification of quarantine process and recognition of quality standardization certificate issued by Nepali officials, harmonization of working hours between customs office of the two countries to boost bilateral trade.

Informing the Chinese officials about institutional and procedural reforms initiated by the Nepal government, Poudel solicited more Chinese investment in crucial sectors of economy such as construction, energy, manufacturing, tourism and agriculture in Nepal.

Speaking on the occasion, Yexian mentioned that bilateral trade fairs would be an important forum for enhancing trade and commercial interaction between entrepreneurs of both the countries. He expressed willingness to help Nepal for its socio-economic development and underscored the need for joint efforts to fully operationalize the agreed border points between Nepal and China.

More than 200 representatives from 70 business enterprises, 36 observer business enterprises, and representatives of Trade and Export Promotion Center are participating from Nepal in the biennial fair. Similarly, around 200 participants from Tibet are also showcasing their products in the five-day event that runs until Monday.

Nepali handmade products, garments, silver and bronze statues of various deities, hand knitted Nepalese Carpet, incense, jewelry, Thankas and herbal products, among others have been showcased in the fair.    ( News courtesy: The Republica)

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Snow leopards in Kanchenjunga area could number 29

A ´genetic census´ of snow leopards in the Kanchenjunga Conservation Area has revealed that the population of this globally threatened species could be as high as 29.

A camera trapping method of census conducted last year in the northern Himalayan area in Taplejung district had put the number of snow leopards within a range of 9 to 12.

However, a recently concluded census using the genetic identities of individual snow leopards obtained from fecal samples showed that there are 19 to 29 snow leopards in the area, according to the Kanchenjunga Conservation Area Project Management Council (KCAPMC).

“The genetic analysis of fecal samples alone determined that there are 19 snow leopards living in the area. So, with the census conducted through camera trapping and other methods, we can estimate that there are upto 29 snow leopards in the conservation area at present,” informed, Ganga Ram Singh, senior conservation officer at KCAPMC.

Kamal Thapa, a snow leopard expert, informed that out of the 19 snow leopards found through genetic analysis of fecal samples, 10 are males and 9 females. He also informed that the recently concluded genetic study of the snow leopard had commenced in 2011.

Following the new finding about the snow leopard, the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) is planning to devise a census with a tracking-collar technique to establish the exact population of the species. Under the new technique, a collar fitted with a small GPS (Global Positioning System) transmitter is attached to the snow leopard to track its movements with the help of computers.

Thapa further informed that although the camera tracking technique is easy to use, the collaring technique is more useful in studying the habits of the snow leopard. He also informed that the GPS collaring technique would be implemented soon.

Four localities --Ramjer, Khambachhen, Yangma and Gala-- considered to be a pocket area for the snow leopard in the northern part of the district had been chosen as the base area for the study.

Taplejung district borders India in the east and the Tibet autonomous region in the north. Given the location of the district, it is possible for snow leopards to cross into Sikkim or Tibet.

However, the snow leopards, which are generally found 3,350 to 6,700 metres above sea level, are more likely to travel northward due to the more favorable climate. Experts believe that the collaring technique will be useful in establishing the real population of the snow leopard.

“While the genetic technique showed the number to be 19, the collaring method would reveal more about the snow leopard,” said Sujit Kumar Shrestha, manager at KCAPMC.
( News courtesy: The Republica)

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UNWTO approves accessible tourism recommendations

The UNWTO recommendations on “Accessible Tourism for All” (2013) have been approved and endorsed by the General Assembly. Updated from the 2005 version, the recommendations outline a form of tourism that involves a collaborative process among stakeholders to enable people with access requirements to function independently through universally designed tourism products, services and environments. These recommendations were developed within the framework of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities of 2007.

Accessible Tourism for All defines the appropriate measures to ensure that persons with disabilities have access, on an equal basis with others, to the physical environment, transportation, information and communications and facilities open to the public or for public use.

“Accessibility is a central element of any responsible and sustainable tourism policy. It is both a human rights imperative and an exceptional business opportunity,” said UNWTO Secretary-General Taleb Rifai. “Above all, we must come to appreciate that accessible tourism does not only benefit persons with disabilities or special needs, it benefits us all,” he added.

Along this line, a manual on “Accessible Tourism for All” is set to be published in late 2013, designed to guide tourism stakeholders to improve the accessibility for tourism destinations, facilities and services worldwide. The development of the Manual is a joint effort between UNWTO, the European Network for Accessible Tourism (ENAT) and two Spanish institutions, the ACS Foundation and the ONCE Foundation.

According to the World Health Organization (2011), there are approximately 1 billion persons with disabilities in the world, or 15% of the world population having a physical, mental or sensory disability. UNWTO´s “Declaration on the Facilitation of Tourist Travel (2009) underlines travel and tourism facilitation for persons with disabilities as an essential element of any policy for the development of responsible tourism.

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Rishi Panchami

Date: September 10, 2013
Venue: All over Nepal


Indra Jatra

Date: September 18, 2013
Venue: Kathmandu Valley


Sarad Pradhan     Asst. Editor: Sudhan Subedi

Media Center | Nepal Tourism Board

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