Small industries using local raw materials backbone of economy: Finance Minister

Kathmandu, January 13

The government has assured to protect and promote small industries that utilise local raw materials for sustainable economic growth of the country.

Speaking at a programme titled ‘Blended Finance and Gender Lens Investing: Development Tools to Achieve the SDGs’, here today, Finance Minister Yubaraj Khatiwada emphasised that such small industries which utilise local raw materials are the backbone of the country’s economy.

Khatiwada further said that inclusive investment in the small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) is necessary for the development and prosperity of the country. “The provincial and local governments should promote such industries by providing them technical assistance, which would reduce their production costs.”

Stressing the need to create conducive environment to facilitate the development of SMEs, he said that especially the small industries which utilise agricultural products could go a long way in solving the problems of unemployment in the country.

Khatiwada further said that banks and financial institutions (BFIs) need to increase their investment in SMEs. “As the government has already created a positive environment for BFIs to invest in SMEs, they should readily provide loans to such entrepreneurs.”

Stating that everyone should have equal access to the means of production for inclusive economic development, he opined that without equal access to land, capital and technology, economic development would not be possible in country.

“The government is focusing on financial inclusion as it envisaged inclusive development through the federal structure,” he said, adding that the local units have already been allocated their budget for equitable development at the grassroots level.

Khatiwada further said that the production base of the country needs to be ramped up to meet the needs of the people, which in turn would also keep the price of goods in check.