THT 10 years ago: Govt in red, seeks greens to escape blues
Kathmandu, January 16, 2008
Government has sought an immediate financial aid to the tune of Rs 5.04 billion from its development partners to meet extra expenses incurred particularly due to ballooning recurrent expenditures. The ministry of finance today held a meeting with the representatives of Kathmandu-based donor agencies and political parties to brief them on recent political developments, particularly 23-point agreement reached among the seven parties and its fiscal implications. Presenting a brief overview of the country’s macroeconomic scenario, Finance Minister Dr Ram Sharan Mahat said the government was seeking donors’ assistance to meet mounting expenditure. “The government has far too limited resources to meet current and imminent requirements, which, as per the current estimate, stand at about Rs 5.04 billion,” Dr Mahat said. “Nepal perhaps never felt a greater need for external financial assistance,” he added. He said the recently concluded agreement commits to address the promises of the Comprehensive Peace Accord signed over two years ago, which would result in additional fiscal burden on the government. In addition to this, formation of the commissions and committees as committed in the agreement will also create further financial burden, Mahat said, adding that the Election Commission has come up with an expenditure estimate that is far above what was budgeted for this fiscal.
SPA panel ponders on two-phase poll option
Kathmandu, January 16, 2008
The coordination committee meeting of the seven-party alliance held today at Maoist central office in Buddhanagar discussed holding the April 10 constituent assembly election in two phases, considering the country’s overall security situation . The SPA leaders would consult the government and the Election Commission about conducting the election in two phases. “We discussed holding the election in two phases keeping in mind the security situation of the country,” CPN-UML general secretary Madhav Kumar Nepal told the mediapersons at the end of the coordination committee meeting. According to Nepal, the meeting agreed to conduct the election focusing on the Tarai region, where some of the groups are still agitating over their representation in the constituent assembly. Nepal said the SPA would call all agitating parties and groups for talks and fulfil their demands, if possible, before the election. CP Mainali of the United Left Front said the coordination committee meeting agreed to ask the government to immediately use diplomatic channels to resolve the Nepal-India border issues. Mainali said the meeting decided to urge the government to make public details of the implementation in accordance with the government’s agreements with the agitating Madhesi parties and groups.