June 28: Finance Minister Janardan Sharma has said that the government announced budget for the upcoming fiscal year taking into consideration the welfare of the country and the people. He, however, complained that the government has been criticized despite its effort to bring respite to the public through the budget.
Responding to the queries of lawmakers during a meeting of the National Assembly held on Tuesday to discuss the Appropriation Bill, the finance minister said that the goals and vision of the budget were clear. He was of the view that the country’s economy can only be strengthened by mobilising the resources and capital in an integrated way.
Finance Minister Sharma claimed that the budget would address the needs of the country.
He defended the budget saying that it focuses on production-oriented economy, creating employment opportunities, poverty alleviation, increasing agricultural production, optimal use of fallow land, distribution of seeds and fertilizer among other issues. He added that the government plans to purchase the farmers’ produce as well.
Stating that agricultural products worth Rs 358 billion are being imported on an average every year, the minister said the government has adopted a policy of providing incentives to discourage imports by increasing exports. The budget has also emphasized the development of entrepreneurship and rural economy, the minister further said.
According to the finance minister, the government has stressed on people’s participation in implementing the programmes announced in the budget.
He further said that the government’s priorities include linking the center of the local units with black-topped roads, increment of industrial produce, development of tourism sector and pulling people out of poverty.
He added that the incumbent government will be fully accountable for the budget announced for the upcoming fiscal year.
Arrangements have been made for the government to purchase sanitary pads worth Rs 2 billion produced within the country, he said, expressing hope that country's economy affected to some extent by fuel price hike in the international market would be made strong through the implementation of the government's policies, programmes and the budget.