Recognising the importance of nutrition and food security for the development and economic growth of the country, the Government of Nepal (GoN) has accorded them a top priority. This is evident from the high level commitments made as well as through the endorsement of an array of government plans, polices and strategies aiming to improve nutrition and food security situation. Nepal is considered an ‘early riser’ country for the global Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) movement. This is due to the commitment and plans to implement and scale up evidence-based cost effective nutrition specific and nutrition sensitive interventions.
The commitment of the GoN to improve the nutrition and food security situation of Nepal is affirmed by several key national plans and strategies. The Multi-sector Nutrition Plan (2013-2017) approved by the cabinet focuses on the first 1000 days between conception and a child’s second birthday defines the roles and responsibilities of six key sectors in improving the nutritional status of women and children. The Ministry of Agriculture Development (MoAD) is in the process of finalizing a new Agriculture Development Strategy and the Food Security and Nutrition Plan also which aim to comprehensively improve food security and nutrition status of the population. The National Planning Commission (NPC) has started to establish a multi-sector, multi-stakeholder and multi-level coordination architectures in order to facilitate information sharing, coordination and collaboration of all relevant stakeholders (government as well as non-government) for nutrition and food security in Nepal. Regular programmes of the Ministries are implemented nation-wide focusing on their sector specific roles and activities to bring about improvements in nutrition and food security in the country.
There is also a generous flow of substantial resources from External Development Partners (EDPs) to support the GoN in this important endeavor. The donors are supporting the implementation of projects and targeted interventions as well as are funding the actions and priorities identified under the national plans.
Given such a strong momentum and commitment for nutrition and food security in the present context in Nepal, a positive and optimistic outlook can be maintained for the future. It can be envisioned that a steady and sustained reduction in undernutrition and food insecurity will result through the joint efforts of GoN and EDPs.