Kathmandu, November 6
Finance Minister Yubaraj Khatiwada has said that the eight per cent growth target that the government had earlier set would be very difficult to achieve in the current fiscal year.
The finance minister made the comment while speaking during the inauguration of the online trading system unveiled by Nepal Stock Exchange in the Capital today. “The government will be able to achieve growth of above six per cent but it will be tough to actually achieve eight per cent growth this year,” he said.
“The government had earlier estimated growth of eight per cent,” the minister said. “However, those who are independently assessing our economy say that the growth rate would be above six per cent but will not touch eight per cent, which means we will have to settle between six per cent and eight per cent growth.”
Khatiwada also mentioned that the banking sector was earning satisfactory profits and it would have a positive impact on the country’s economy.
“At the moment, the industrial production capacity has nearly doubled and is in an increasing trend,” Khatiwada pointed out. “Since we were able to achieve economic growth of six per cent in the last three fiscal years, I believe that though it would be difficult the current government will be able to meet the growth target of eight per cent as the investment climate in the country has improved in recent times.”
The finance minister added that at present the non-banking sector has also been playing a major role in the economic growth of the country. “We usually look at only the agriculture sector, like paddy production, when assessing our gross domestic product but we also have to take the tourism sector into account now as it has been playing a vital role in aiding the economy in recent years.”
Meanwhile, the Asian Development Bank in April had projected that Nepal would achieve economic growth of 4.9 per cent in fiscal 2018-19. However, it recently revised its projection and stated that the country would be able to achieve growth of 5.5 per cent in the current fiscal.
Moreover, the International Monetary Fund has said Nepal’s economic growth in current fiscal would stand at five per cent. Likewise, the World Bank has also projected the country’s economic growth to stand at 5.9 per cent in the ongoing fiscal year.
However, the Central Bureau of Statistics has made a projection of 5.89 per cent growth in fiscal 2018-19.
A version of this article appears in print on November 07, 2018 of The Himalayan Times.