Nepalese ambassador to the USA, Dr. Shankar Prasad Sharma, attended a farewell reception hosted in his honor by the US State Department and Protocol office in Washington DC last week. In a rare special farewell remark conveyed to ambassador Sharma by Deputy Chief of Protocol, Secretary of State John Kerry appreciated Dr. Sharma’s role in helping to strengthen the important partnership between Nepal and the United States. Ambassador Sharma in the farewell reception thanked the US Government for its strong support for the institutionalization of democracy and socio-economic development of the country. The reception was attended by high level diplomats, government officials, diaspora community and the officials of the Embassy of Nepal.
Ambassador Sharma also paid a farewell call on William J. Burns, Deputy Secretary of State at his office at the State Department, Washington DC on January 17, 2014.
During the meeting, matters of mutual interest and the ways to further consolidate them were discussed. The ambassador apprised Mr. Burns of the successfully concluded election of the Constituent Assembly in Nepal in November last year and ongoing consultations among the major political parties to build consensus and writing the constitution on time.
Deputy Secretary of State thanked Dr Sharma for his contribution to promote and strengthen the bilateral relations between the United States and Nepal. He also underscored major accomplishments during his tenure such as resumption of the US Peace Corps, Trade and Investment Framework Agreement, inclusion of Nepal in the Millennium Challenge Corporation threshold program and most importantly the establishment of Congressional Nepal Caucus in the House.
Deputy Secretary of State reiterated the commitment of the United States of America to assist continually in Nepal’s socio-economic development and said the US would like to see Nepal a peaceful, prosperous and democratic country.
Similarly, on January 16, 2014, ambassador Sharma paid a farewell call on Ander Crenshaw (Florida), Co-Chair of the Congressional Nepal Caucus in the US House of Representatives. On the occasion, Congressmen Crenshaw handed over a registered statement in the House of Representatives at Capitol Hill honoring Ambassador Sharma for his dedicated service. While commending Ambassador Sharma’s active role, Congressman Crenshaw in his statement said, “No doubt, due in part to his tireless and committed work for Nepal, the past four years have brought many positive changes to the country and its relations with the United States. Not only has the Congressional Nepal Caucus been established, which will continue to educate Members of Congress on Capitol Hill about Nepal and the benefits of a strong relationship between our two countries, but the Peace Corps has resumed in Nepal after an eight year hiatus due to a now-resolved conflict. In addition, the Millennium Challenge Corporation has declared Nepal “threshold program eligible,'' strengthening the dialogue between the two countries and preparing Nepal for a future MCC Compact. And in April of 2011, a Trade and Investment Framework Agreement was signed, which established a framework for trade and resolved outstanding disputes between our nations. Each of these triumphs strengthens our relationship and will continue to help Nepal in her path to development and democracy.”
Ambassador Sharma thanked Hon. Ander Crenshaw for Co-Chairing Nepal Caucus in the House. He hoped that Hon. Crenshaw will continue to advocate and pursue for more financial assistance and support from the House to Nepal in future.
Rishi Ram Ghimire, Minister/DCM at the Nepali embassy, was also present during the meetings.
Dr. Sharma also hosted a farewell reception at his residence last week, which was attended by senior American diplomats from the State Department, White House and the Capitol Hill including Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia Nisha Biswal and members of diplomatic community.
The Nepali diaspora community also hosted a farewell reception in honor of Ambassador Dr. Sharma last week.
Ambassador Sharma is also scheduled to pay a farewell call on Nisha Desai Biswal, Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs earlier this week.
Ambassador Dr. Sharma is returning to Nepal this week upon completion of his four year’s stint in the USA.