NRA: Pacts worth over $3b signed with donors

- SANJEEV GIRI, Kathmandu

Jun 26, 2017-

The government has achieved a substantial progress in signing loan and grant agreements with donors, accounting for 75 percent of $4.10 billion they had pledged during the International Conference on Nepal’s Reconstruction in June 2015. The government has signed agreements worth $3.06 billion.

 The process of signing agreements with donors has gathered pace in the past 

year. Having signed agreements worth just $1.14 billion until March 2016, the government signed agreements worth $1.92 billion in the past 15 months.

Of the total $4.10 billion pledged by the donors, $1.97billion is grant support and $2.13 billion is loan. According to the National Reconstruction Authority (NRA) data, the agreement reached with donors includes $1.55 billion in grant and $1.51 billion in loan. 

According to NRA, fund worth $3.06 billion that has come under the government basket is both on-budgeted as well as off-budgeted. While the NRA itself can spend on-budgeted fund, off-budgeted fund is directly spent by the donor agency by obtaining permission from the NRA. 

The reconstruction drive has started taking momentum in the past few months as financial agreement with the Ministry of Finance has been held in line with the project agreement with the NRA, said Bhisma Kumar Bhusal, under secretary at the NRA. As most of the donor agencies have held project agreement with the NRA, there is not much confusion on budget expenditure. 

Likewise, election of local representatives in most of the earthquake-hit districts has increased the pace of reconstruction, according to the NRA. The rebuilding authority is developing working guidelines for mobilizing newly-elected representatives, including mayor, deputy mayor, chiefs and deputy chiefs of village council.  

“Technicians and other officials, now, cannot make excuse of ongoing monsoon season. And this will help expedite the reconstruction drive,” Bhusal said, adding that the availability of elected representatives will also help moderating issues related with manpower. “We are likely to have a clear picture on future course of reconstruction drive within the next six months.” The NRA is also planning to reassess the number of beneficiaries in all the earthquake-affected districts. Technicians will examine quake-affected houses and analyse whether such infrastructure can be retrofitted or not. The owner of a house that can be retrofitted will be provided with Rs100,000, while those in need of reconstructing their homes will each get Rs300,000. 

The study will be conducted on the basis of a set of guidelines on retrofitting of buildings published by the Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD) in April. The guideline contains standard procedures for retrofitting different kinds of buildings.

Out of 744,620 beneficiaries in 31 affected districts, the NRA has signed deals with 614,103 households for providing grant for rebuilding house as of Sunday. Likewise, 578,156 households have received first instalment of house rebuilding grant, while 33,408 and 1,814 households have received second and third instalment respectively. 

 

Total 

Pledge: $4.10 billion 

Grant: $1.97 billion 

Loan: $2.13 billion 

Total 

Agreement signed: $3.06 billon 

Grant: $1.55 billon 

Loan: $1.51 billion 

Published: 26-06-2017 08:14

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