Nepal | September 18, 2019

Private sector seeks interest rate stability, simplified tax rules

• BUDGET CURTAIN RAISER

Sujan Dhungana

Kathmandu, May 21

A week before announcement of budget for fiscal 2019-20, the private sector urged the government to make the budget ‘implementation-oriented’ and avoid infeasible programmes and policies.

The private sector said governments have failed to fully implement past budgets, ultimately affecting development and economic growth. In this context, they said the incumbent strong government should bring a budget that ensures budgetary programmes and policies are properly implemented.

“The country has historically failed to execute budgetary programmes and policies. The upcoming fiscal budget should focus on this,” said Bhawani Rana, president of Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry.

This year too, FNCCI, Confederation of Nepalese Industries and Nepal Chamber of Commerce submitted a joint recommendation to Finance Minister Yubaraj Khatiwada. They recommended measures to be adopted in banking, industrial, financial, tax administration, tourism and agriculture sectors to encourage business. Along with introducing feasible and resource-assured projects, the government should introduce effective project monitoring and policy implementation mechanism through the budget, said Satish Kumar More, CNI president. “We expect policies and programmes that will accelerate business growth and overall development. But it is crucial to focus on implementation,” he said.

The private sector has urged the government to simplify tax rules and ensure businesses do not face the problem of double taxation. They have also sought policy intervention to stabilise bank interest rate. They want the budget to focus on addressing the problem of credit crunch in the market. For this, they have suggested that the government boost development expenditure and improve credit flow in the banking sector.

On the tax and revenue front, the private sector has urged the government to reduce corporate income tax by five per cent, give 50 per cent waiver on tax levied by local governments on land and housing registration, especially for those meant for industry and hotel business. They also want excise duty scrapped on all merchandise, except tobacco and liquor.


A version of this article appears in print on May 22, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.


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