Kathmandu, May 16
The government is preparing to endorse the controversial Millennium Challenge Corporation deal signed with the United States government in 2017 from Parliament during the current session, it has been learned.
As the government’s annual policy and programme that President Bidya Devi Bhandari presented in Parliament on Friday mentioned a few projects that were supposed to be run with the MCC deal, many have speculated that the government would press the legislative body to endorse the deal.
Owing to the division about the agreement in the ruling Nepal Communist Party, Parliament is yet to endorse the document, effectively barring the government from its implementation. Concluding that the deal was a part of the US government’s Indo-Pacific Strategy, the ruling party’s task force has recommended the deal’s amendment before its endorsement. However, it has been believed that Nepal has already passed the time available for any amendment.
In the annual policy and programme, the government has announced to move forward the proposed Lapsiphedi-Ratamate, and Lapsiphedi-Ratamate-Damauli-Butwal 400 KV transmission line in the next year. This project was also listed under the USD 500 million-dollar deal.
A board member of the Millennium Challenge Account-Nepal, the government agency formed to implement the MCC projects, says the government is preparing to table it in Parliament, seeking endorsement, immediately after the discussion on the annual budget to be presented on May 28.