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During the late 18th-early 19th centuries, the principality of Gorkha united many of the other principalities and states of the sub-Himalayan region into a Nepalese Kingdom. Nepal retained its independence following the Anglo-Nepalese War of 1814-16 and the subsequent peace treaty laid the foundations for two centuries of amicable relations between Britain and Nepal. (The Brigade of Gurkhas continues to serve in the British Army to the present day.) In 1951, the Nepali monarch ended the century-old system of rule by hereditary premiers and instituted a cabinet system that brought political parties into the government. That arrangement lasted until 1960, when political parties were again banned, but was reinstated in 1990 with the establishment of a multiparty democracy within the framework of a constitutional monarchy.


Southern Asia, between China and India

Natural Resources

quartz, water, timber, hydropower, scenic beauty, small deposits of lignite, copper, cobalt, iron ore

Population - distribution

most of the population is divided nearly equally between a concentration in the southern-most plains of the Tarai region and the central hilly region; overall density is quite low

Nepali (official) 44.6%, Maithali 11.7%, Bhojpuri 6%, Tharu 5.8%, Tamang 5.1%, Newar 3.2%, Magar 3%, Bajjika 3%, Urdu 2.6%, Avadhi 1.9%, Limbu 1.3%, Gurung 1.2%, other 10.4%, unspecified 0.2%
KATHMANDU (capital) 1.183 million (2015)
Conventional long form
Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal
Conventional short form
Local long form
Sanghiya Loktantrik Ganatantra Nepal
Local short form
federal parliamentary republic
Geographic coordinates
27 43 N, 85 19 E
Time difference
UTC+5.75 (10.75 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt
Nepal is among the poorest and least developed countries in the world, with about one-quarter of its population living below the poverty line. Nepal is heavily dependent on remittances, which amount to as much as 30% of GDP. Agriculture is the mainstay of the economy, providing a livelihood for almost two-thirds of the population but accounting for only one-third of GDP. Industrial activity mainly involves the processing of agricultural products, including pulses, jute, sugarcane, tobacco, and grain.
External debt stocks
US$ 4,155,117,000
Total tax rate (% of commercial profits)
Real Interest Rate
Manufacturing, value added (% of GDP)
Current Account Balance
US$ 2,446,630,400
Labor Force, Total
Employment in Agriculture
Employment in Industry
Employment in Services
Unemployment Rate
Imports of goods and services
US$ 8,321,894,907
Exports of goods and services
US$ 2,253,504,600
Total Merchandise Trade
FDI, net inflows
US$ 51,895,700
Commercial Service Exports
US$ 1,060,298,853
pulses, rice, corn, wheat, sugarcane, jute, root crops; milk, water buffalo meat
tourism, carpets, textiles; small rice, jute, sugar, and oilseed mills; cigarettes, cement and brick production
clothing, pulses, carpets, textiles, juice, jute goods
India 58.6%, US 10%, Germany 4% (1 January - 30 October 2016)
petroleum products, machinery and equipment, gold, electrical goods, medicine
India 61.5%, China 15.4% (1 January - 30 October 2016)
Country Risk Rating
A high-risk political and economic situation and an often very difficult business environment can have a very significant impact on corporate payment behavior. Corporate default probability is very high.
Business Climate Rating
The business environment is very difficult. Corporate financial information is rarely available and when available usually unreliable. The legal system makes debt collection very unpredictable. The institutional framework has very serious weaknesses. Intercompany transactions can thus be very difficult to manage in the highly risky environments rated D.
  • Private transfers sustaining household consumption, the main driver of growth
  • Lively services sector, especially tourism
  • Financial and technical support from India and China
  • Considerable international solidarity
  • Heavily dependent on the agricultural sector and vulnerable to weather events
  • Isolated and difficult access to many of the country's regions
  • Economy strongly affected by the earthquakes of April and May 2015
  • Weak productivity of the secondary sector
  • Infrastructure shortcomings, recurrent electricity and fuel shortages
  • Recurrent political difficulties and violence

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