Kathmandu, May 29
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance Krishna Bahadur Mahara presenting the annual budget for the next fiscal year 2017/18 at the Parliament meeting.
Presenting the budget, Mahara said sufficient resources have been allocated to post-earthquake reconstruction, institutionalisation of newly formed local levels, national pride projects, investment in basic needs including health and education and elections at local, provincial and federal levels.
Opportunities and challenges
Meanwhile, Mahara said the government projected spending 84 per cent of the budget allocated for this fiscal year by the end of the year in mid-July. He claimed most of economic indicators in this fiscal year were positive.
However, implementation of federalism, delay in completion of infrastructure development projects, finding markets for domestic projects, bringing all economic transactions to the formal ambit, timely reconstruction in the post-earthquake setting would be challenges for the government to implement the budget, Mahara informed.
The Minister said programmes aimed at conclusion of the peace process and constitution implementation would continue next year as well and sufficient budget would be allocated for those programmes.
Budget for local governments
He said the local levels would be given the following grants:
- Rural municipalities: Rs 100-390 million
- Municipalities: Rs 140-430 million
- Sub-metropolitan cities: Rs 400-430 million
- Metropolitan cities: Rs 560 million-1.24 billion
Additional budget would be provided based on performances.
Costs to operate health and education programmes at the local level would also be sent to the local levels directly as the constitution has assigned the local units to exercise various rights.
Likewise, programmes related to sanitation, water management, youth and sports would also be handled by local levels.
Total Rs 225.054 billion has been allocated for local levels. It is around 17 per cent of the total budget.
Mahara said second and third tranches of reconstruction grants would be provided to the survivors as soon as possible.
Likewise, reconstruction of quake-hit historical and cultural monuments would be expedited.
Human settlements at risky places would be relocated and provided with basic facilities.
Rs 146 billion has been allocated for the reconstruction sector.
National pride projects
Rs 500 million has been allocated for the Upper Tamakoshi Hydropower Project. Rs 10.17 billion has been allocated for the Budhi Gandaki Hydropower Project.
Rs 13.72 billion has been allocated for construction of three international airports in Nijgadh, Lumbini and Pokhara.
Rs 10.14 billion has been allocated for the Kathmandu-Nijgadh fast track.
Rs 6.57 billion has been allocated to complete the Melamchi Water Supply Project by upcoming Dashain festival.
Likewise, Rs 1.93 billion has been allocated for the President Chure Conservation Project.
Mahara said Rs 30.4 billion has been allocated for overall development of agricultural sector. Likewise, Rs 27.41 billion has been allocated for irrigation.
Rs 15.34 billion has been allocated for forest conservation.
The government would promote foreign investment and investment of non-resident Nepalis. The Youth Entrepreneurship Programme would continue.
Subsidised loans would be provided to promote entrepreneurship among people living under the poverty line.
New economic sectors would be established to facilitate trade activities with India and China.
Each province would have petroleum storage facilities to suffice for 90 days.
In total, Rs 10.96 billion has been allocated for commercial activities.
Rs 89.5 billion has been allocated for construction and improvement of various roads.
Rs 2.56 billion has been allocated for Narayangadh-Muglin road expansion project.
Rs 62.47 billion has been allocated for the energy development.
Rs 30.48 billion has been allocated for urban development.
Various satellite cities would be developed in Kathmandu district whereas each province would have a mega city.
The Constituency Development Programme would continue intact.
Rs 66.12 billion has been allocated for education sector.
Rs 1.14 billion has been allocated for labour sector. Nepalis going abroad for employment should compulsorily open a bank account, through which they would sent remittance to home.
Rs 2.23 billion has been allocated for women empowerment, child development and social welfare programmes.
Rs 22.7 billion has been allocated for drinking water management.
Rs 2.24 billion has been allocated for programmes related to youth and sports.
Rs 36 billion has been allocated for social security allowances.
Rs 7.62 billion has been allocated for environment conservation.
The government meanwhile said all financial transactions at government offices would be done through banks. Likewise, every citizen would be made to open a bank account.
A new law would be introduced to enable local government units monitor activities of non-government organisations.
Disaster management would be made more effective. Programmes would be introduced for capacity building of Nepal Army, Nepal Police and Armed Police Force.
The government did not increase the salary of civil servants this year.
Sources of income
- Revenue: Rs 723 billion
- Principal repayment: Rs 15 billion
- Foreign grant: Rs 72 billion
- Foreign loan: Rs 200 billion
- Domestic loan: Rs 145 billion
The government has targeted to achieve an ambitious economic growth of 7.2 per cent next year.
Minister Mahara presents annual budget for next fiscal year at House
Kathmandu, May 29
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance Krishna Bahadur Mahara is presenting the annual budget for the next fiscal year 2017/18 at the Parliament meeting.
Earlier, the Cabinet meeting had endorsed the budget of Rs 1.278 trillion.
The budget statement does not include any new programme this time as the election code of conduct imposed for the second phase of local level elections scheduled for June 14 bars the government from doing so.
The Ministry of Finance has said the budget would prioritise constitution implementation and elections at local, provincial and federal levels.
Likewise, considerable amounts would be allocated to energy, infrastructure, education, agriculture, health and poverty alleviation.
Meanwhile, a heavy sum would be allocated to newly formed local levels.