Kathmandu, October 18
The Ministry of Finance (MoF) has sought details of stalled, incomplete or defunct projects from different government ministries at the federal and provincial level.
As the budget for 2019-20 fiscal year has envisioned to mark the current year as the year to complete various stalled and defunct projects, the MoF has sought the details of such projects from both the federal and provincial governments.
Uttar Kumar Khatri, joint secretary at MoF, informed that details of such incomplete projects have been sought in order to allocate budget (based on priority) to these projects and expedite their construction.
“We have already started receiving details of such projects, while ministries at the federal and provincial levels are in the process of sending it to MoF. Most of the stalled projects are related to road and bridge construction,” said Khatri.
MoF will provide necessary budget to resume such projects to related ministries after analysing them, as per him. The government has put aside Rs 10 billion for completion of such stalled projects in the budget for this fiscal year. In case of budget shortfall, MoF is expected to fund such projects through other means.
This year, the fiscal budget has given more priority to ongoing projects and pending projects over bringing in new projects. The move has received praise from various quarters as the government through earlier budget announcements has been criticised for introducing infeasible projects and allocating huge sums to them.
Allocation of budget to infeasible projects has remained a historical problem in Nepal. This tendency has affected capital expenditure of the government every year and the entire development process.
“Prioritising completion of ongoing and stalled projects is a good initiative. However, the feasibility of stalled projects should be properly analysed before allocating the budget to them,” opined an expert, seeking anonymity.
A version of this article appears in print on October 19, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.