FinMin to be more prudent in budget allocation

KATHMANDU: The federal budget will discontinue the Constituency Development Programme and other uneconomical small scale programmes from the next fiscal.

Presenting the ‘principles and priorities’ of the Appropriation Bill of the next fiscal in the Parliament today, Finance Minister Yubaraj Khatiwada said the federal budget would not allocate resources for small scale programmes, as many of them had been transferred to the local levels. He also mentioned that the finance ministry would discontinue irrelevant programmes of the past in the federal set-up and be more ‘efficient’ in resource allocation for mega projects.

The Ministry of Finance will allocate resources to projects based only on returns, effectiveness of the implementation and impact on society and the economy.

There has been a debate on the irrelevance of CDP in the public sphere, under which Rs 100 million was allocated to each constituency in the previous budget. In the federal set-up, the local and provincial governments are responsible for dealing with projects that were in the domain of CDP in the past.

Earlier, there was a trend of allocating resources for small scale projects of even below Rs 100,000.

According to the ‘principles and priorities’ of the Appropriation Bill presented by the finance minister today, the fiscal budget will lay emphasis on optimum coordination for efficient utilisation of grants transferred to the provincial and local governments. The projects being developed by the federal government will be handed over to the provincial and local governments based on the report on unbundling of authority endorsed by the Cabinet.

The budget for the next fiscal will encourage loans from the financial sector to be mobilised to productive sectors like agriculture, manufacturing, tourism and hydro-electricity, as these sectors require fresh investment to address the structural bottlenecks of low productivity and few job opportunities and to minimise the unsustainably rising trade deficit.

The federal government will allocate resources to accelerate post-earthquake reconstruction, construct strategic road networks, expressways, urban infrastructure, tourism infrastructure, hydro-electricity and irrigation projects and control floods, according to Khatiwada.

Through the next fiscal budget, the government will promote transparency and good governance and competition in the market, enhance the capacity of institutions and be more austere while spending, abiding by all the national and international norms of public finance management.

The ‘principles and priorities’ of the Appropriation Bill lay emphasis on attracting foreign investment in sectors that can create an extensive value chain in the national economy.


'Budget to focus on economic prosperity'

KATHMANDU: Finance Minister Yubaraj Khatiwada has apprised the National Assembly (NA) that the upcoming budget would align the fundamental rights enshrined in the constitution and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Minister Khatiwada said this while presenting a motion 'Principles and Priorities of Appropriation Bill for the Budget (excluding tax proposal) of Fiscal Year 2075-76 BS " at National Assembly.

The government's top priority is to implement the constitutionally-guaranteed fundamental rights of the citizens and attain rapid economic growth, he said, adding, "Next budget will be focused on reducing poverty and attaining economic prosperity".

Among the priorities of the budget for next year are puire drinking water, access to basic health services, health insurance for all, elimination of illiteracy, public education, new employment opportunities, capacity building of labourers and tourism development.

He further shared that other priorities would be post-earthquake reconstruction and expansion of social security range.

Four ordinances approved

The NA meeting unanimously approved four ordinances.

'National Assembly Member Election Ordinance-2075', 'National Medical Education Ordinace-2075', 'Commission of Investigation on Enforced Disappeared Persons, Truth and Reconciliation (First Amendment) Ordinance-2075 BS' and 'Remuneration, Service Conditions and Benefits of General Secretary of Federal Parliament, Secretary of the House of Representatives and Secretary of National Assembly Ordinance 2075' were approved by the upper house today.

Next meeting of the NA will take place at 10.00am on Thursday.