A budget of $57 billion is to be spent at the Finance Minister’s discretion

Kathmandu, June 2

Finance Minister Janardhan Sharma has been allotted of Rs 57 billion to spend on his own in this year’s budget.

Around Rs. 112 billion has been allotted to the Ministry of Finance under several sections in the budget. It includes everything from a distinguished visitor’s trip to hospitality, a delegation’s visit and greeting, disaster aid, and the purchase of computer equipment.

A total of Rs. 57 billion has been set aside for recurring and regular capital spending. There is no plan in place for how or where the money will be spent.

”The amount to be set aside is not the amount to be spent, but the amount to be spent at the discretion of the finance minister,” one economist explained.

Such funds have been discovered to be spent at will. The finance ministry has set out Rs 37
billion for such miscellaneous titles in the current fiscal year. The red book detailing the
Ministry of Finance’s expenditure information for the future fiscal year states that ten billion has been spent from this in the current fiscal year.

Miscellaneous expenditure was given Rs. 1.60 billion in Schedule 5 of the Expenditure Estimates on the basis of payment method without revealing such categories in the budget. The government distributes the funds from this miscellaneous expenditure to other regions
depending on the demand. For such incidental expenditures, Rs. 1.74 billion was set aside in the current Fiscal Year’s budget.

The budget also considers non-disclosure of such expenses to be transparent,” according to the expert, adding that an increase in this amount might signify an increase in non-transparent spending.

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