April 18, 2024, Thursday
Nepal 1:37:26 pm

UK to provide Rs. 11.7 billion for business development and green growth

The Nepal Weekly
February 27, 2024

Nepal and the UK recently signed two grants agreements- – Nepal in Business (NIB) programmes, and implementation of Green Growth Nepal (GGN) programmes.

On the behalf of the Government of Nepal Shree Krishna Nepal, Joint-Secretary of Ministry of Finance, and on the behalf of the British Government,Pippa Bird, Development Director at the British Embassy in Nepal signed the agreement.

Minister for Finance, Dr Prakash Sharan Mahat, and visiting British Minister for Development of Africa, Andrew Mitchell were also present on the signing occasion.

The agreement mentions that an amount over Pound Sterling 70 million (some Rs 11.70 billion) will be implemented for the period of seven years.

The grant for NIB programme is expected to help unlock Nepal’s economic prosperity by generating and addressing income poverty in Nepal. It will also support and finance small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) to build organizations effectiveness through improved management and productivity to achieve business growth and create jobs.

Likewise, the grant for GGN programmes will support the government of Nepal to increase green, resilient and inclusive growth by expanding investment in green industries and services, improving climate-resilient infrastructures and strengthening sustainable economic policy and facilitating economic opportunities across Nepal.

Finance Minister Mahat, on the occasion, highlighted the longstanding bilateral relationships between Nepal and the UK and extended his gratitude towards the British government for its support in meeting Nepal’s development priorities.

Mahat also mentioned, “the agreement is important for achieving Nepal’s goals of fostering economic growth, promoting sustainability and reducing poverty. The grant programmes are also important for economic transformation, climate resilience, stronger social services and inclusion.” He expressed his confidence that the implementation of NIB and GGN programmes would contribute to improving the foreign direct investment and developing climate-friendly investment projects in Nepal.

On the occasion, visiting British Minister Mitchell stated that there are plenty of issues for cooperation and collaboration between Nepal and the UK in the areas of economic transformation, climate actions and resilience, stronger social serviced and promotion of inclusion among others.

According to the press release of the British Embassy in Kathmandu, “UK development support will see £400 million ($505m) in grants delivered by 2030. Impacts will include helping create 13,500 jobs, attracting more than $1 billion in investment, and supporting access to quality health and education services for two million women and girls,” states a press note issued by the British Embassy in Kathmandu.

The new £400m development portfolio will mobilize vital private sector funding in development, tackle the climate crisis, and support economic growth in Nepal. The plan will support the creation of 13,500 jobs, help Nepal attract over $1 billion in investment, and deliver access to quality healthcare and education services for two million women and girls by 2030.

The grant for the GGN program will support the Government of Nepal to increase green, resilient, and inclusive growth by expanding investment in green industries and services, improving climate-resilient infrastructures, and strengthening sustainable economic policy and facilitating economic opportunities across Nepal, according to the Finance Ministry.

In a speech at the Ministry of Finance after the signing of the Development Portfolio, Minister Mitchell set out how the UK will work with Nepal to help mobilize development funding, tackle the climate crisis, and build business to support Nepal’s expected transition from Least Developed Country status. Improved access to sustainable local infrastructure, a key element of that transition, is expected to benefit 1.7 million people across the country as a result of the UK’s new Development Portfolio.