Finance Minister Outlines Budget Focus on Competitive Sectors

Finance Minister Outlines Budget Focus on Competitive Sectors

The Finance Minister Barshman Pun has stated that Nepal's forthcoming budget will focus on enhancing various important sectors. In a recent speech, Pun emphasized the government's commitment to fostering tourism, information technology (IT), hydropower, mining, cement, and agriculture. He stressed that these sectors are competitive and have substantial potential to stimulate economic growth and employment opportunities in Nepal.

Education and health also received attention from the Finance Minister. Pun committed to allocating up to 10 percent of the budget to these crucial areas, acknowledging their fundamental role in national development.

Another important area of focus is attaining self-reliance in agriculture. Acknowledging Nepal's reliance on imported agricultural goods, Pun has laid out a strategy to substitute them with locally made products. The government aims to accomplish this by offering incentives to farmers and modernizing the agricultural marketplace and sector. If successful, this effort has the potential to substantially decrease Nepal's trade imbalance and uplift local farmers.

Pun emphasizes the importance of collaboration in driving agricultural growth. The speaker highlighted the significance of a collaboration between the public and private sectors, with the government playing a facilitating role. An approach has been proposed that aims to strategically support the private sector's role in agriculture and ensure that farmers have reliable access to markets.

The Finance Minister also addressed challenges related to corruption and fraud. He acknowledged difficulties in establishing a separate agency to handle these issues due to legal and manpower limitations. However, Pun asserted the government's commitment to good governance and highlighted its efforts to address these problems.

Finally, Pun discussed the upcoming budget's limitations. He mentioned the pre-set ceiling of 18 billion rupees, explaining that exceeding this limit would be difficult. Despite resource limitations, Pun is engaging with various agencies to ensure the budget is objective and reflects stakeholder input.

Pun expressed optimism about Nepal's economic path, anticipating economic expansion to exceed forecasts and possibly surpass 4.5 percent by the fiscal year's end. He highlighted encouraging developments in tourism and energy, indicating progress compared to previous periods. Finance Minister Pun's speech offers valuable perspectives on the government's economic agenda for the upcoming budget, emphasizing the promotion of competitive industries, agricultural enhancement, social service improvements, and collaborative efforts for sustainable economic growth and development in Nepal.

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