Press Release

 H. E. Mr. Arjun B. Thapa assumes office of the Secretary-General of SAARC

H. E. Mr. Arjun Bahadur Thapa of Nepal assumed charge as the Secretary-General of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) from 1 March 2014. H. E. Mr. Thapa is the twelfth Secretary-General of the Association and succeeds H. E. Mr. Ahmed Saleem of the Maldives.

H. E. Mr. Thapa was appointed to the position by the Thirty-fifth Session of the SAARC Council of Ministers held in the Maldives on 20 February 2014. Endorsing the nomination from the Government of Nepal, the Council “approved the appointment of H. E. Mr. Arjun Bahadur Thapa as the next Secretary General of SAARC for a three-year term commencing from 1st March 2014.”

Prior to this appointment, H. E. Mr. Thapa served as the Foreign Secretary of Nepal. In his diplomatic career, H. E. Mr. Thapa has also served as Ambassador of Nepal to the United Arab Emirates and as Deputy Permanent Representative/Minister Plenipotentiary as well as Charge d’Affaires, a.i., at the Permanent Mission of Nepal to the United Nations in New York.

Born in January 1956, H. E. Mr. Thapa has a Masters’ Degree in International Law.

The Secretaries-General of SAARC are appointed by the Council of Ministers upon nomination by a Member State on the basis of the principle of rotation in alphabetical order for a period of three years.

Launched in December 1985, SAARC comprises Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka as its members.