Nepal and the then the Union of the Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) established diplomatic relations on July 20, 1956. Soon after the dissolution of the former Soviet Union, the Government of Nepal extended full and formal diplomatic recognition to the Russian Federation as a sovereign and independent state on December 27, 1991.

The relations between Nepal and Russia are close and friendly. They are characterized by goodwill, understanding, mutual respect and cooperation. They are multi-faceted in nature and scope, which encompass economic and technical cooperation, trade, tourism, culture and human resource development. Both Nepal and Russia have similar views on international issues of mutual concerns.

Nepal-Russia contacts at people-to-people level go far beyond the establishment of the formal ties in 1956. Professor Ivan P. Minaev of St. Petersburg University, a prominent Orientalist and scholar of Buddhism, visited Nepal in 1875 with a view to study culture, language, religion, ethnography, tradition, and arts of local people in Kathmandu. His research on culture in general and Buddhism in particular has helped connect the people of both countries. The teachings and ideals of the Lord Buddha, who was born in Lumbini, Nepal, had spread to Russia through Tibet and Mongolia. Buriyatia, Tuva and Kalmykia regions of the Russian Federation have substantial number of Buddhism practitioners. Boris Lissanevitch, who is a quite popular Russian national in Nepal, visited Kathmandu in 1951 and started doing hotel business there to spend his whole life. He established a good standard Royal Hotel in Kathmandu for the tourists visiting Nepal.

Both Nepal and Russia, in 2016, celebrated the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations organizing various programs.Foreign Ministers of both countries exchanged congratulatory messages on the occasion. They underlined the need for enhanced exchanges of visits and interactions at various levels, and deepening and widening the areas of cooperation for consolidating bilateral relations.

In May 2002, the agreement on the abolition of the visas for the diplomatic and official passport holders was signed.

Exchanges of Visits

The exchanges of visits at various levels help elevate the extant relations to a new height.  The bilateral ties have further been reinforced with the exchanges of visits and high level contacts between the two countries. From the Nepalese side, late King Mahendra paid a state visit to the Soviet Union in 1958, followed by late King Birendra in 1976. Similarly, the former Prime Minister Mr. Madhav Kumar Nepal visited Russia in order to participate in the World Tiger Summit held in Saint Petersburg on November 24-25, 2010. A Nepali delegation led by the then Deputy Prime Minister and the Minister for Foreign Affairs Mr. Upendra Yadav made a working visit to Russia in July 2011to participate in NRN regional conference held in Russia. Former Chief Justice Mr. Ram Kumar Prasad Shah had an official visit to Moscow in February 2015. The Former Speaker of the House of Representatives Mr. S. Nemwang visited Russia in October 2006.Similarly Rt. Hon’ble Mrs. Onsari Gharti, Speaker of the Legislature-Parliament visited Russia on November 21-25, 2016 upon the invitation of Honorable Ms. Valentina Matviyenko, Chairman of the Federation Council of the Russian Federation.

From Russian side, Chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union Marshal Kliment Voroshilov paid a state visit to Nepal in 1960. In 1976, a delegation of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR visited Nepal. The First Deputy Chairman of the Presidium Mr. V. V. Kuznetsov visited Nepal in 1981. The Deputy Foreign Minister of USSR Igor Alexseevich Rogachyov visited Nepal in 1987. Delegations of the Federation Council (Upper House) of the Federal Assembly of Russia visited Nepal in December 2000 and December 2007. The Chief Justice of the Russian Federation Mr. V.M. Lebedev paid an official visit to Nepal on March 13-16, 2006 at the invitation of the Chief Justice of Nepal. He also visited Nepal from November 16 to 20, 2010. For the first time, a delegation comprising of the members of the State Duma (Lower House) of the Federal Assembly of Russia visited Nepal in March 2011.