Print Edition - 2015-07-13 | MONEY
Govt to declare Budget Implementation Year
Jul 12, 2015-
The government has decided to mark the next fiscal year as Budget Implementation Year, and plans to make the announcement during the presentation of the new budget to Parliament on Tuesday.
The objective of Budget Implementation Year is to give the existing development projects a shot in the arm as their poor implementation in the last several years has resulted in poor capital spending. Finance Secretary Suman Sharma confirmed that they were discussing announcing Budget Implementation Year with the budget.
According to sources at the Finance Ministry and National Planning Commission (NPC), the development projects currently underway will not need to get their budgets authorized or their programmes and projects approved by the NPC during Budget Implementation Year. “The project chiefs won’t be transferred before their term is up as long as their performance is satisfactory,” said a source.
The project approval process alone takes more than two months which delays the tender process. Moreover, frequent transfers of key project officials have resulted in development projects being held up. The total expenditure has reached just 76.3 percent as of July 11, and the Finance Ministry expects the figure to be below 80 percent for this fiscal year. Meanwhile, capital expenditure was recorded at 55.47 percent with just a few days left before the fiscal year ends. This has been the trend for the last several years as expenditure, particularly capital expenditure, has usually remained sluggish.
Government officials said that expenditure could not pick up since they were busy with rehabilitation efforts after the recent earthquakes. Due to the damage caused to many development projects by the tremors, they could not move ahead.
In order to speed up the pace of the projects, the budget for the next fiscal year will discourage the tendency of allocating budgets for projects that do not have a detailed feasibility study.
“A policy will be adopted to allocate budgets only for such projects that have completed the pre-construction phases,” said the Policies and Programme of the government.
The necessary laws will be formulated and implemented to resolve problems like land acquisition and compensation that have plagued the development of infrastructure projects like electricity, roads and drinking water.
Published: 13-07-2015 07:51