Province governments call for state-specific plans

  • 15th Periodic Plan
- Post Report, Kathmandu

Oct 13, 2018-

Senior officials of provincial governments have urged the federal government to include specific province-centric programmes in the 15th periodic plan.

The government is currently working on a five-year periodic plan, first one after the country was federated following the three-tier elections of last year. 

During an interaction organised by the National Planning Commission on Friday, senior officials of the provincial governments asked for measures that would ensure equitable development of all provinces.

Dhundi Prasad Niraula, secretary of Economic Affairs and Planning for Karnali Province, said there should not be a blanket plan for the provinces, as the status of development differs from one province to another.

“Karnali is the poorest province and it requires special plan for its growth and development,” he said. 

According to a recent study of Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB), Karnali Province and Sudurpaschim Province have the lowest contribution to the national economy, with Karnali contributing 4.1 percent and Sudurpaschim contributing 6.3 percent.

In terms of per capita income, average earning of an individual in Sudurpaschim is lowest at $660 per year followed by $677 for the Karnali province.

Province 3, on the other hand, tops in both areas. The province, where the national capital Kathmandu is situated, contributes 31.9 percent to the national economy and per capita income of its residents stands at $1,534. The average per capita income of Nepalis is $1,004, according to the Central Bureau of Statistics.

Considering the diverse socio-economic development, the provincial government officials stressed that the new plan should be balanced. 

Kiran Rupakheti, secretary of Economic Affairs and Planning for Province 2, said that the plan should incorporate separate chapter for each province and there should be reflection of the need of specific province.

“There should also be proper adjustment between the provincial government’s periodic plan and federal government’s plan as well as their timelines of achieving certain targets,” he said.

Pralhad Sapkota, secretary of Economic Affairs and Planning for Province 1, demanded a clear demarcation of the roles that local, provincial and federal governments would have while implementing the national plan.

“It should be clearly stated which government is responsible for constructing particular infrastructure to avoid duplication and other controversies,” he said. “Each layer of the government should have a clear set of goals.”

The provincial officials also raised the issue of inadequate human resources and the lack of planning experts to prepare plans at the provincial level.

They urged the NPC to lend its expertise when provincial governments prepare their own periodic plans.

As per the concept paper of the 15th plan, it will aim high and equitable national income, complete utilisation of human capital and potential, expansion of accessible and modern infrastructure, improve production and productivity, decent living standard and creation of civilized society. It also envisions creating a healthy and balanced ecosystem and fostering good governance, democracy and national unity.

Published: 13-10-2018 08:08

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