Balanced budget will be brought for coming fiscal year: Finance Minister Pun

Kathmandu, March 21:

Finance Minister Barshaman Pun has said a balanced budget would be brought for the coming fiscal year.

A meeting of the Finance Committee under the House of Representatives at Singha Durbar today, Minster Pun expressed the belief that balance would be maintained in the budget within resources and limits.

He shared that issues including modernization of agriculture, marketization, management of capable human resources in inland-revenue, making customs transparent would be prioritized in the coming budget.

The Finance Minister stressed that a budget incorporating the activities carried out by the erstwhile government would be brought as per the current need and relevance, adding priority would be given to national pride projects in the budget.

The coming budget would incorporate the issues including production-oriented sector, agriculture, industry, tourism, education, health and information technology adopting the commitment of building socialism oriented national economy imagined by the constitution, he opined.

The policy of involving huge human resources in agriculture making the agriculture commercial through modernization would be in budget’s priority.

Government plans to export software worth Rs 500 billion in five year

In the meeting of the Finance Committee today, the Finance Minister said a study suggests that Nepal is capable of exporting software services worth Rs 500 billion in the next five years and the budget for an upcoming fiscal year will prioritise this potentiality.

Previous fiscal year, Nepal’s software services and related equipment exports amounted to Rs 76 billion, he said, promising to give top priority to the IT sector in the upcoming budget and to the creation of job opportunities for an escalating size of IT human resources within the country. As he said, annul productions of IT human resources in the country number 10,000.

The Minister also pledged to address concerns and submissions of lawmakers regarding issues of agriculture, energy, tourism, education and health in the budget.

Committee President Santosh Chalise advised the government to focus on the production and export-based sector, electricity, tourism promotion and the modernization of agriculture.

The Committee held discussions with the Finance Minister about the priorities and principles (except taxation) of the Appropriation Bill for the fiscal year 2081-82 BS (2024-25).

The Committee members advised the government to allocate budget on the need basis. They also demanded the Finance Minister allocate budget focusing on the acceleration of projects of national priorities and revival of sick projects.

Former Finance Minister Gyanendra Bahadur Karki said the budget should be brought on the basis of need and not on proximity to power. He stressed that the next fiscal year’s budget should be focussed on meeting the SDGs, completing the incomplete projects and balanced development.

Lawmaker Surya Thapa called for including in the budget for the prompt completion of the projects by strengthening the economy.

Likewise, lawmakers Dipak Khadka, Narayani Sharma, Metmani Chaudhary, Narayan Prasad Bhattarai, Chhiring Dumdul Lama (Bhote), Ganga Karki, Rana Kumari Magar, Anjali Shrestha and Mukta Kumari Yadav said the budget should be practical and not bloated. It should be oriented towards import substitution, increasing the revenue collection and adequate budgetary allocations should be made for agriculture, education, health sectors.

Rastriya Samachar Samiti (RSS)

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