May 6: The Office of the Prime Minister and Council of Ministers has prepared the draft of the policies and programmes for the upcoming fiscal year (FY 2021/22).
Government officials confirmed that the draft of the policies and programmes has been prepared and will be presented at a joint session of the House of Representatives and National Assembly by President Bidhya Devi Bhandari on behalf of the government. As per the constitutional provision, the fiscal budget should be presented on the 15th day in the month of Jestha (May 29). The policies and programmes should be presented before the budget. However, the budget session has already been delayed this time.
Spokesperson of the Parliament Secretariat, Rojnath Pandey, said that all preparations for the budget session has been made but it is not certain when the policies and programmes will be tabled in the parliament as the budget session has not been called yet. A special session of parliament has been called for May 10 to seek vote of confidence by Prime Minister KP Oli.
According to a senior official involved in preparing the draft of the policies and programmes, the government has given priority to the construction of state-of-the-art hospitals at every local level. Similarly, relief packages will be introduced for the industries affected by COVID-19 pandemic and programmes will be included to expedite the development process.
The policies and programmes will also focus on increasing economic activities, invest in the productive sector, prioritize internal resource mobilization and reduce unnecessary expenses in light of the COVID-19 crisis.
According to the official, the policies and programmes have prioritized commercial farming, industrial development and increasing productivity, completion of national pride projects within the deadline.
The government is set to announce an increase in old-age allowance so that elderly people can look after themselves and implement the new minimum salary strictly from mid-July. The government is also preparing to introduce incentives for innovation, special discounts for export-oriented industries, special emphasis on the Digital Nepal campaign, and additional employment generation programmes through the Prime Minister's Employment Programme.
In the mid-February, Chief Secretary Shankar Das Bairagi had instructed the secretaries to prepare policies and programs that are worthy of implementation. He had also instructed them to formulate policies and programs by holding necessary discussions to avoid duplication with the local level programmes.