Governor of Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) Maha Prasad Adhikari said that collective effort of all concerned stakeholders is necessary to achieve inclusive and sustainable economic recovery while facing the challenges in the economy due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Addressing a virtual meeting hosted by the Alliance for Financial Inclusion (AFI) today, the governor said it is not possible for the central bank to solely address the crises caused by the pandemic. Stating that all the stakeholders, including the board members of the AFI, need to take the initiatives for inclusive and sustainable economic recovery, he urged for collective dedication.

Mentioning that the negative impact of the crisis created by the pandemic may be felt for some time, the governor stressed on the need to adopt effective and practical course of action to address the challenges that may arise from it.

Over the past year, AFI's collective policy and regulatory practices have played a key role in mitigating a number of risks, he said. "During this period, we've made some efforts to protect the most vulnerable sections of the society. It needs to be continued with more effectiveness," he added.

Discussing the COVID pandemic and the context of Nepal at the meeting, Governor Adhikari said that small and medium enterprises along with Nepal's tourism have been more affected.

He also said that refinancing facility has been provided to the affected businesses through banks and financial institutions as a relief package and electronic payment transactions have been promoted during this period.

He further stressed on the need to adopt policy measures to support the economic and social upliftment of women, poor, unskilled workers, micro and small entrepreneurs.

The meeting was attended by 33 people, including senior NRB officials and also members of the AFI.

A version of this article appears in the print on February 6, 2021, of The Himalayan Times.