Finance Minister Janardhan Sharma has mentioned that the country will not be able to develop unless Karnali Province, which has the highest poverty rate in the country, also develops and has urged banks and financial institutions to increase their investments in the province. He stated this during an interaction organised by the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Planning of Karnali, in Kathmandu on August 19.
The Finance Minister said for the overall development of the country economic activities must be boosted in Karnali, Sudurpaschim Province and Province 2. He added that it is not just the responsibility of the provincial government to develop Karnali and that a national effort must be made towards that end. According to the latest survey conducted by the National Planning Commission in 2019, Karnali had 39.5% absolute poverty while the figure was 25.5% in Sudurpaschim and 24.5% in Province 2.
Sharma further stated that poverty could be reduced by developing agriculture and agri-processing industries in these provinces and urged BFIs to participate in fairs organised by local farms and disburse loans. He added if the Karnali Employment Programme initiated by the provincial government was effectively implemented then poverty could be totally reduced within the next seven years.