NRB marks 67th anniversary; Gov highlights efforts to revive economy

This undated image shows Governor of Nepal Rastra Bank, Maha Prasad Adhikari at his office. Photo courtesy: NRB

KATHMANDU: Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) Governor Maha Prasad Adhikari issued a statement on the occasion of the bank’s 67th anniversary on Wednesday.

He highlighted the efforts of the central bank in reviving the economy and managing the pressure in the external sector.

On the occasion, Governor Adhikari thanked the bank’s Board of Directors and all the employees for playing an important role in achieving the objectives of the Bank. He expressed his gratitude to the government, Finance Ministry, banks and financial institutions (BFIs), international financial institutions, media and well-wishers for their significant contribution to the performance of the Bank.

Governor presented the current economic status of the country as well as the important works performed by the central bank last year. He said the economic activities have improved as the impact of Covid 19 has subsided. Industry capacity utilisation and hotel occupancy have improved.

According to Governor Adhikari, economic activities remained sluggish in the first quarter of 2020. However, the economic activities resumed after the restriction imposed to stem coronavirus infection were lifted, he added. The survey on the impact of Covid 19 on the economy had shown that only 4.2% of industries and businesses were completely shut down. The economic activities were somewhat affected as the government re-imposed lockdown due to the infection of the Delta variant of Covid 19, which had spread since mid-April of 2021. However, economic activity resumed as the transmission rate of infection subsided.

Another survey conducted in October 2021 found that only 2.3% of industries and businesses were closed. Although omicron variant surfaced in January 2022, economic activities did not stop since the rate of infection decreased rapidly with the availability of vaccines against Covid 19. As a result, many sectors in the country are moving in the direction of recovery. Likewise, the arrival of foreign tourists has increased as well as the number of Nepalis going abroad in foreign employment, Governor Adhikari said in the statement.

The central bank continued with the flexible monetary and regulatory policies adopted to support the economic recovery last year. The bank continued the refinancing arrangements, Adhikari said in the statement. During the second wave of coronavirus infection, when many people lost their lives due to lack of oxygen, the NRB made arrangements to provide loan at base rate to set up oxygen plant, in addition, special refinancing was also made available for one year.

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