MoI seeks endorsement of industrial-related acts before NIS

Endorsement of FITTA before Investment Summit a must, as it would guide foreign investment in Nepal— Nabindra Raj Joshi, minister for industry

Kathmandu, January 26

The Ministry of Industry (MoI) has urged lawmakers to fast-track the endorsement of acts related to the industrial sector and investment eyeing the Nepal Investment Summit, which is scheduled to be held in March.

Informing that endorsement of all acts related to industrial sector is crucial to promote Nepal as an investment destination during the Nepal Investment Summit (NIS), MoI urged lawmakers to speed-up the endorsement process of Foreign Investment and Technology Transfer Act (FITTA), Company Act and Intellectual Property Act.

The government is holding the NIS on March 2 and 3 with an aim to harness investment opportunities in Nepal and promote the country as an investment-friendly nation.

While MoI is gearing up to table FITTA and Intellectual Property Act at the Cabinet soon, a parliamentary sub-committee is currently studying the amendment proposals of lawmakers on the proposed draft of the Company Act.

“Among others, endorsement of FITTA is a must before the summit, as it would guide foreign investment in Nepal. We seek lawmakers’ support to simplify the process and ensure that FITTA is endorsed in a timely manner,” Nabindra Raj Joshi, minister for industry, said.

The amendment draft of FITTA and Company Act has given different tax facilities to foreign investors to promote foreign investment in Nepal.

Addressing the meeting of Parliamentary Committee on Commerce, Industry and Consumer Welfare Relation today, Joshi said that endorsement of FITTA along with Company Act and Intellectual Property Act will convey the message to investors that Nepal does not have legal obstructions for investment during the summit.

“MoI has been accelerating works from its side. We urge all lawmakers to finalise drafts of these acts and fast-track their endorsement from the Parliament,” he added.

According to Joshi, these acts have opened the avenues for investments in the country by introducing online registration of industries, approval of investment, one-window policy, subsidy on taxes to foreign investment, among others.

Former industry minister and lawmaker Som Prasad Pandey said that government policies and acts related to industrial sector is no longer time-relevant and need to be amended if Nepal is to draw large-scale investments.

Meanwhile, Bhisma Raj Angdambe, chairman of the committee, said that the investment summit is timely and much needed for the country. “There is no doubt that pending government policies and acts have to be endorsed soon. Our committee will support MoI to bring all industry-related acts before the investment summit,” said Angdambe, adding that the government should make the summit a milestone for industrial growth of the country.

MoI has a target to draw more than 300 foreign investors during the event. Moreover, MoI has set an ambitious target to draw investment commitment of more than $1 billion from the event.