Private sector’s role in recovery stressed


The government has sought private sector’s collaboration in the recovery of the damages and the losses caused by devastating earthquake of April 25 and subsequent powerful aftershocks on the social (housing), productive and infrastructure sectors .

Speaking at the programme titled ‘Responsible Business Guideline Launch and Nepali Private Sector in Nation’s Rebuilding’ organised by the National Business Initiative (NBI), on Monday, Govinda Raj Pokharel, vice chairman of the National Planning Commission (NPC) — the apex planning body of the government — said that private sector should play an effective role for the recovery of these sectors.

The post-disaster needs assessment (PDNA) report has shown that 50 per cent of the total losses and damages are in housing and human settlement, and private sector (real estate ventures) can do a lot in this sector in collaboration with the government, as per Pokharel.

“The government can facilitate real estate ventures in land acquisition and procuring loans from the International Finance Corporation (IFC) of the World Bank Group and other financers to develop low-cost housings outside the Valley in earthquake-affected areas,” Pokharel said, adding, “The government can also send the relief package of Rs 200,000 for the quake victims through these real estate firms and the victims can purchase the house with these companies by deducting the relief amount announced by government.”

This model, as per Pokharel, can deliver the houses to the victims within desired time, as the government has announced that the houses will be built and handed over to the quake victims within two years.

Pokharel further said that the Reconstruction Authority, which is going to be set up very soon, will further define the role of private sector in housing and human settlement development, as well as for the recovery of infrastructure and productive sectors.

Losses and damages in the productive and infrastructure sectors have been calculated at 25 per cent and 10 per cent, respectively, of the total effect of $6.7 billion or one-third of the country’s economy.