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Daal bhaat, chiya, raksi and more!

Daal bhaat, chiya, raksi and more!

It’s fantastic to have you all here—because we have so much to celebrate together. In December we marked the centenary of the UK-Nepal Treaty of Friendship signed in the Singha Durbar in 1923 pledging that our two nations will forever maintain peace, friendship and mutual respect. It helped establish Nepal’s sovereignty. 

The Treaty confirmed the UK’s proud status as Nepal’s oldest friend. There have been many events to mark the centenary over recent months. That’s a lot of daal bhaat, a lot of chiya, and maybe a bit of Raksi too! I’m delighted that we are hosting the culmination of these celebrations here this evening.

There is so much that brings us together. From His Majesty King Charles trekking in the foothills of the Himalayas as a young Prince, to our academic alliances, to the huge contribution that the Nepali diaspora makes here in the UK, even getting to the finals of Masterchef!

We’re partners in fighting climate change, in supporting Nepal’s development, with the £400m of support which helps Nepal capitalize on its strengths, including its people and its potential for clean energy and to overcome challenges posed by disasters, and through our growing business links as well.

At the Nepal Investment Summit last month, I was proud that the UK played a leading role in creating a more conductive enabling environment for foreign investment into Nepal which extended the bridge we are building between Nepal and global capital markets. 

And of course, I want to pay tribute to surely the greatest symbol of our friendship, proof that this bond is truly unique and that is the Gurkhas. I had the pleasure of addressing a Gurkha passing out parade at Catterick in my constituency, back in 2021, paying tribute to their courage, loyalty, and sacrifice. Their service is a reminder of the deep ties between our two nations and a promise that those ties will continue to endure.

We have come a long way together since 1923. So, let’s keep building all aspects of this remarkable friendship. And here’s to another one hundred years!

Speech delivered by British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak during a reception hosted at Number 10 Downing Street on 20 May to celebrate 100 years of the UK-Nepal Treaty of Friendship