Thursday, March 28, 2019

EU ambassador visits Bungmati to see efforts towards conservation

EU ambassador to Nepal Veronica Cody visited Bungmati in Lalitpur today to take stock of the progress of Sustainable Tourism and Green Growth for Heritage Settlements of the Kathmandu Valley (Parya-Sampada) project funded under SWITCH-Asia intervention of the European Union (EU).
The project is implemented by UN-Habitat in partnership with Institute for Housing and Urban Development Studies, the Netherlands, Centre for Integrated Urban Development, SAARC Business Association of Home-based workers Nepal, and Lumanti. National Reconstruction Authority (NRA) is joining hands to provide backstopping support for the reconstruction works at Bungamati. This comprehensive initiative was kicked off in May 2018 in partnership with the government and Lalitpur Metropolitan City, and is expected to be completed by 2020.
This initiative is an effort to support the post-earthquake recovery process, to regain the lost momentum by restoring Bungmati as a pilot case to its previous stage by conservation and creating sustainable tourism opportunities, mainly to improve livelihood of the community by capitalising on culture, local cuisines, festivals, rituals, music, local stories, etc for the micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) including homestays, cafes, and handicraft shops, especially youths and women. Bungamati is selected as a prototype out of 52 heritage settlements in the Kathmandu Valley, which has a huge potential to showcase heritage conservation and sustainable tourism through green growth, sustainable reconstruction, entrepreneurship development of women and youth, investment and product innovation.
Speaking at the programme, ambassador Cody highlighted that the action contributes to enhance the institutional capacity of the local government and communities to put the beautiful Bungmati town firmly on the radar screen of the tourism industry, more specifically, bringing more tourists, supporting the government's effort to celebrate 'Visit Nepal 2020', a national tourism year committed to promote tourism industry and enhance local tourism as associated industries, as well as promote sustainable development, reducing poverty and contributing towards climate change mitigating, addressing current global challenges and opportunities in the light of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (SDG), more specifically SDGs 5, 8, 11 and 12, supporting Nepal in the achievement of SDGs in a timely manner.

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