‘Govt's prime focus will be to graduate Nepal from LDC status by 2022'

government wants to partner with the private sector while formulating economic policies and development plans

Kathmandu, April 11

Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli has said that the government will give due priority to economic and development agendas targeting Nepal's goal to graduate to the league of developing nations by 2022.

Citing that Nepal's per capita income (PCI) is still far below the UN criteria of $1,245, Oli said that government's new plans and policies will aim to raise the income level of each Nepali to the required level and earn the ‘developing nation' tag by 2022.

According to the statistics of fiscal year 2016-17, Nepal's PCI is at $865.

Addressing the inaugural session of the 52nd annual general meeting of Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FNCCI) in the Capital today, Oli said, “It is a great challenge for us to attain the required PCI level to graduate from the Least Developed Country categorisation. However, the government is committed to raise the PCI level as required and graduate to the league of the developing nations by 2022.”

Earlier, the government had requested the United Nations Committee for the Development Policy (CDP) to provide some additional time to Nepal to graduate to the league of developing countries as the country's per capita income is far below the required level for it to graduate to the league of developing countries.

Oli also urged the private sector to come up with reformative suggestions in the commerce, industry and development sectors that are necessary to expedite economic growth and development processes in Nepal.

“The government wants to partner with the private sector while formulating economic policies and development plans,” Oli said, informing that the government will soon form a ‘business consultative' group of experts from the private sector to advise the government on economic growth and development activities.

Oli also stressed the need to increase domestic production of goods and promote them in the international markets to substitute imports.

“Our economy is so poor that any economic upheaval in the global market affects our market. Thus, time has come to strengthen our economy,” added Oli.

On the occasion, FNCCI President Bhawani Rana said that government's priority should be on energy production, implementing one-window policy for investment, reforming old policies of the government, promoting production and manufacturing sectors, ensuring stability in bank interest rates and ensuring that businesses do not fall victim to double-taxation in the new federal system.

“All these things are crucial to ensure a healthy business environment in Nepal,” said Rana, adding that the private sector is optimistic with the new government and is hopeful that the government will address various challenges that the private sector is facing in doing business in Nepal today.