Ministry secys directed to increase capital expenditure

Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Bishnu Prasad Paudel and secretaries of various ministries hold a discussion at the Ministry of Finance in Singha Durbar, Kathmandu, on Monday, January 23, 2023.

KATHMANDU: Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Bishnu Prasad Paudel has instructed the secretaries of various ministries to increase capital expenditure and reduce recurrent expenditure.

In a programme held to discuss the overall economic situation of the country and the implementation of budget at the Ministry of Finance (MoF) on Monday, Minister Paudel mentioned that the situation of capital expenditure and revenue mobilisation was worrying and instructed to strictly manage the revenue and give priority to capital expenditure.

Finance Minister Paudel opined that allocated funds from government sources should be spent on the same heading only and suggested discouraging recurrent expenditure and forbade the request of additional budget for any heading other than mandatory ones.

Minister Paudel also directed secretaries to complete the projects involving capital expenditure on time and not to arrange manpower except for the approved posts.

The Finance Minister instructed secretaries to prioritise national-level projects while preparing the next budget and strictly ordered to include the projects that have been completely studied and which have the potential to create jobs and give high returns, and avoid small projects subjected to local and provincial governments. Moreover, he directed the secretaries of the relevant ministries to assist in making the revenue mobilisation effective.

He pointed out that there were weaknesses in the mobilisation of foreign resources and asked secretaries to play effective roles in the mobilisation of grants and loans.

Minister Paudel directed secretaries to include policies and programmes in such a way that received foreign assistance is invested in the productive sector.

During the discussion, Finance Secretary Toyam Raya informed that the Finance Ministry has already started the work on cost reduction and applying frugality and expected other ministries also implement it. Raya urged ministries not to ask for more budget for routine work.

Likewise, MoF Secretary (Revenue)  Ram Prasad Ghimire urged all agencies to cooperate in controlling revenue leakage.

On the occasion, Joint Secretary and Spokesperson, Ananda Kafle, informed that the target of revenue till January 2023 was Rs 651.61 billion of which 490. 04 billion has been collected. He informed that Rs 53.45 billion have been spent in the budget allocation of Rs 100.80 billion in capital expenditure till mid-January and Rs 455.12 billion have been spent in the allocation of Rs 594 billion in recurrent expenditure. Of the allocation of Rs 109.90 billion for financing, Rs 67.76 billion have been spent, Kafle said.

The secretaries of 12 ministries with higher allocations of capital expenditure were present in the programme.

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