FinMin expects to scrape together another Rs10b

- POST REPORT, Kathmandu
FinMin expects to scrape together another Rs10b

Jun 8, 2015-

The Finance Ministry expects to scrape together another Rs10 billion in unspent budgets of various ministries which it plans to spend on reconstruction activities.  

Meanwhile, the government plans to raise internal loans amounting to Rs53 billion. Most of the money is expected to remain as savings as the government will not be able to spend much of it this late in the fiscal year. 

The government cannot raise internal loans amounting to more than 5 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP) in the next fiscal year, and expects to have adequate resources for the Reconstruction Fund from the loans that will be raised this year.

It didn’t raise all of the planned internal loans in the last fiscal year as it has not been able to spend all of the capital budget over the last few years. 

Earlier, the Finance Ministry had drawn Rs5 billion from various ministries from their unspent recurrent budgets and given Rs4 billion of this money to the Home Ministry for disaster relief.

“Based on the projection of various ministries of how much of their budgets will remain unspent, we have concluded that we can generate an additional Rs10 billion from the allocated budgets this fiscal year,” said a senior Finance Ministry official. “This figure is based on the savings in both the recurrent and capital budgets.”

The government has planned to deposit the unspent budgets in the Reconstruction Fund. It has announced that it will be putting Rs20 billion in the fund while the rest of the planned Rs200 billion fund will be generated from foreign donors.

The construction works at many development projects, particularly in earthquake-hit areas, have come to a halt following the earthquake and aftershocks. 

The 456 MW Upper Tamakoshi Hydropower Project in Dolakha and the 60 MW Trishuli 3A in Rasuwa have been at a standstill since the tremors.  

“The Energy Ministry has said it can save Rs3 billion which is the largest unspent budget among the ministries,” said the Finance Ministry official.

The government has not yet dropped any development programme to save money. It has announced a number of programmes for quake victims including cash gifts of up to Rs200,000 per family to rebuild their destroyed houses. 

According to the Finance Ministry official, the government will have to skip priority 2 and priority 3 projects if these costly announcements are implemented during this fiscal year. 

There are 339 priority 1 projects, 130 priority 2 projects and 22 priority 3 projects. Priority 1 projects have been allocated a budget of Rs527.36 billion out of the total budget of Rs618 billion for this fiscal year. The rest of the money has been set aside for priority 2 and 3 projects.

Published: 09-06-2015 08:40

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