Government plans to revive sick enterprises

Kathmandu, September 11

The government is preparing to revive a few state-owned enterprises that have already closed down or have been struggling to survive. Minister for Industry Nabindra Raj Joshi, today, said that the government will soon revive Nepal Drugs Ltd and the names of two other companies will be announced soon.

Nepal Drugs is on the verge of collapse as it has failed to upgrade its production process as per the World Health Organisation’s good manufacturing practice (GMP) standard due to lack of resources. Minister Joshi said that the government will revive three enterprises including Nepal Drugs in this fiscal and has welcomed the private sector to join hands for the revival of the firms.

“The government is open to three modalities — in management contract with private sector, in public private partnership and solely by the government — for the revival of the sick enterprises and we want to invite the private sector to be involved in this process,” Joshi stated. Unveiling the Industrial Sector Reform Action Plan at the Ministry of Industry (MoI), today, Minister Joshi said that the government has been taking the initiative to revive state-owned enterprises to send out a message to foreign investors that the government is committed to improving the industrial environment in the country.

Apart from Nepal Drugs, MoI is also planning to revive Birgunj Sugar Factory, Agriculture Machinery Company, Gorakhkali Rubber Industry, Nepal Orind Magnesite Company, Nepal Metal Company and Butwal Yarn Company and the government will soon select two from among the aforementioned companies.

Revival of Janakpur Cigarette Factory and Biratnagar Jute Mills is also on the cards in the next phase, according to the minister.

The MoI has also announced seed money to set up enterprises at the rural level. Targeting the youth and women, the ministry has floated an enterprise development programme for which a group of youths and women can apply for the fund at the district administration office with the idea of the enterprise. It can obtain the fund once the programme comes into implementation.

As the country has been witnessing a modest growth and high unemployment, only massive enterprise development programmes can change the dynamics of the Nepali economy, according to the minister.

The MoI is also preparing to organise investment conference separately with domestic and foreign investors in the near future.