MPs ask FinMin to do ‘reality check’ before preparing budget

- Post Report, Kathmandu
The govt will have to rely on internal and external lendings for at least a third of the budget as it can hardly raise revenue of Rs 900 billion, says an NC leader

May 11, 2018-Commenting on the principles and priorities of the Appropriation Bill for the upcoming fiscal year, the Members of Parliament have suggested the government take into account the ground reality while formulating new budget.

Putting across their views at a House of Representatives meeting on Thursday, the lawmakers suggested Finance Minister Yubraj Khatiwada to work for strengthening the country’s internal economy through the budget.

Commenting on the principles and priorities, Nepali Congress lawmaker Minendra Rijal suggested the incumbent government give due credit to the previous governments for their initiatives leading to the growth of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by 7.4 and 5.9 percent respectively in the last two fiscal years.

He asked Minister Khatiwada to have a “dream budget keeping in mind the ground reality”. “I urge him to dream reaching out for the sky with the feet firmly on the ground,” Rijal said, taking a dig at government’s preparations for a Rs 1.5 trillion budget for the fiscal year 2018/19. “The government will have to rely on internal and external lendings for at least a third of the budget as it can hardly raise revenue of Rs 900 billion,” he added.

UML lawmaker Bhim Rawal suggested formulating a budget that enhances the economy of the country which consequently boosts the country’s national security. Lauding the document presented by Minister Khatiwada, Rawal said more focus should be given to modernisation of the agriculture sector, which is the backbone of the national economy.

Lawmakers from the Madhesi parties called for a budget that strengthens the provincial and local units. Rastriya Janata Party-Nepal MP Laxman Lal Karna said the provincial and local units must be strengthened for a stronger federalism.

“Our provincial and local governments don’t have much to do in the lack of adequate budget. The focus should be on allocating maximum budget to them,” Karna said, adding that the local governments should be given authority to carry out small projects while the provincial governments look after the medium-sized projects. He said the central government should be governing only the larger projects and monitoring the works carried out by the local and provincial governments.

Published: 11-05-2018 07:19

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