Print Edition - 2015-05-19 | News
High-level representation sought in donor conference
May 18, 2015-
Nepal has called on its development partners and friendly nations for their high representation at an international donor conference that the country is planning to host in June to garner a greater international support for the rehabilitation and reconstruction works.
The message was conveyed by Finance Minister Ram Sharan Mahat during separate meetings with Indian Ambassador Ranjit Rae, Chinese Ambassador Wu Chuntai, US Ambassador Peter W Bodde and German Ambassador Matthias Mayer, the ministry said in a statement.
As the government is preparing an annual budget, it needs huge funds for reconstruction and rehabilitation, Mahat told the envoys, emphasizing the need to convene such conference soon, it said.
Commending the help extended Nepal by the development partners for search and rescue missions in the immediate aftermath of the Greath Earthquake, Mahat told the envoys, “Having gradually come out of the rescue and relief phase, we now have to focus on rehabilitation and reconstruction works.”
Mahat believes that the government carried out search and rescue operations quite effectively following the disaster, considering Nepal’s low expertise on addressing natural calamities of this scale.
“We learned a hard lesson from this crisis. Now on, we will build earthquake-resistance buildings and ensure that all construction works are regulated,” he said.
Some of the settlements in the worst-affected areas may have to be relocated, he said, adding that the government is collecting data on damage inflicted by the quake.
The government is collecting data from ground about the damage caused by the quake, said Mahat adding that ahead of the donor conference, the government will come up with the details of the damage and program that will be disseminated to the donor communities.
While the venue for the conference has not yet been fixed, the government wants to convene it in Kathmandu, the minister said in response to envoys’ queries over venue and security arrangements for the conference. “But if aftershocks continue, we may change the venue upon assessing the conditions of the hotel. Several countries have expressed interest to host the event,” said Mahat.
During the meeting, US envoy Bodde suggested that Nepal should bring a clear work plan for reconstruction, promising full cooperation from the US government. German Ambassador Mayer said that his nation is interested in reconstruction bid, especially in sectors like health, education and heritage rebuilding. Chinese envoy said China would always stand with Nepal at this moment of crisis.
Published: 19-05-2015 07:57