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Strengthening Nepal-AIT Collaboration: Ambassador’s Visit Emphasizes Prospects for Enhanced Partnership

30 Apr 2024
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By AIT Public Affairs

30 April 2024: His Excellency Mr. Dhan Bahadur Oli, Ambassador of Nepal to Thailand and member of the AIT Board of Trustees, met with Prof. Kazuo Yamamoto, President of the Asian Institute of Technology (AIT), and other officials on 30 April 2024. The visit focused on enhancing the already robust ties between Nepal and AIT, and exploring prospects for further cooperation and collaboration.

Accompanied by Mr. Prakash Adhikari, Deputy Chief of Mission and Minister Counsellor, Ambassador Oli met with senior AIT officials to explore potential collaborative projects. The discussions emphasized existing research and partnerships involving Nepal.

Prof. Kazuo Yamamoto
His Excellency Mr. Dhan Bahadur Oli

Professor Yamamoto expressed his gratitude for the continued collaboration with the Government of Nepal, expressing his eagerness to engage and collaborate in various areas. “This meeting highlights the exceptional talents of Nepali individuals at AIT and reaffirms our long-standing partnership. Our students not only excel academically but also make valuable contributions to their homeland. I look forward to exploring further opportunities for cooperation between AIT and Nepal,” he added.

Ambassador Oli expressed his gratitude to Prof. Yamamoto and the AIT community for their warm hospitality and strong partnership. He commended AIT’s role in fostering innovation and supporting research that prepares graduates as future leaders. Ambassador Oli emphasized the urgent need for robust research and innovation to address Nepal’s challenges, especially those arising from climate change. Despite Nepal’s minimal contributions to global pollution, the country faces significant environmental impacts that require greater scientific research and technological advancement. Ambassador Oli praised AIT alumni for their contributions to Nepal’s development and reaffirmed his commitment to supporting AIT’s mission to empower researchers and scholars. He assured that the embassy is ready to assist in any capacity.

The meeting was also attended by Prof. Nitin K. Tripathi, Acting VPAA; Prof. Sangam Shrestha, Dean SET and Co-Director, GWSC; Prof. Abdul P. Salam, Dean SERD; Prof. Rajendra P. Shrestha, Professor, NRM/SERD; Dr. Ram C. Bhujel, Director Aqua-Center and Research Associate Professor, AARM/SERD; Dr. Anish Ghimire, Assistant Professor, EEM/SERD; Ms. Namita Sravat, Deputy Institute Secretary; Mr. Shawn P. Kelly, Executive Director, OIPA, Dr. Sumana Shrestha, Director, International Affairs, OIPA; Ms. Kritagya Regmi, Media and Communication Officer; and Mr. Dipesh Dhoj GC, Digital Media Officer of Public Affairs at OIPA. 

During the meeting, participants discussed various topics aimed at enhancing the role of AIT in the areas of training, capacity building, and research. The focus was on addressing global challenges such as climate change, disaster management, and technological development while meeting Nepal’s specific needs. There was also a discussion on how to integrate more Nepalis into AIT’s programs and leverage the institute’s resources to have a significant local impact. The meeting ended with a commitment to strengthen the partnership between AIT and Nepali institutions for robust collaboration to address local and global challenges.

After the meeting, Ambassador Oli spoke with AIT staff and students, encouraging them to contribute to Nepal’s development from any part of the world. He also assured them of the embassy’s support whenever needed.

The relationship between Nepal and AIT is strong and has deep roots. AIT has produced 1,714 alumni from Nepal and currently has 7 faculty members, 27 staff members, and 145 Nepali students. Nepal ranks top 5 among the student population in AIT. The Ambassador of Nepal has been a part of the AIT Board of Trustees since 1981, which highlights the significance of the collaboration between the two entities. This partnership extends beyond student enrollment, encompassing various educational initiatives such as the Nepal Local Currency Fund, training programs, research collaborations and dual degree initiatives. AIT’s engagement with Nepal also involves ongoing agreements with prestigious institutions like Tribhuwan University, Kathmandu University and Pokhara University, reflecting a longstanding commitment to fostering academic cooperation. Furthermore, AIT has recently formed partnerships with some new engineering colleges for joint activities, which shows that the bond between AIT and Nepal is dynamic and enduring, poised for further growth and development.