Japan grants Rs 180 million to Nepal

Kathmandu, March 5:

Japan today pledged to provide an assistance of Rs 180 million (three hundred million Yen) to the government of Nepal for increase of food production with special emphasis on underprivileged farmers.

The document to this effect was signed by Tsutomu Hiraoka, ambassador of Japan to Nepal and Rameshore Prasad Khanal, officiating secretary of the ministry of finance, on behalf of their respective governments.

The grant, said a statement issued by the embassy of Japan, has been extended for procuring necessary items to increase food production in Nepal.

The government of Japan has been extending grant assistance for the increase of food production to Nepal since 1977.

The last such grant was offered in Japan’s fiscal year 2004, said the statement. Nepal does not have domestic producers of chemical fertilizers which is an important component for good agricultural production, and so has to depend on imports.

This grant will be used for the procurement of chemical fertilizers enabling the country to meet its growing food demand, claimed the release.

The fertilizer procured under this grant will be utilised as a buffer-stock to counter acute shortages and price hikes and will be supplied to farmers in remote regions where private sector activities are limited, it added.

The Japanese ambassador claimed Japan has always been keen in extending assistance to Nepal for its socio-economic development. He hoped this grant would further strengthen the existing friendly relations between the two countries.