September 26: The government has drawn criticism for weak implementation of the trade policy introduced five years ago.
The study report prepared by the government shows weak implementation of the trade policy that was introduced to increase the contribution of the commercial sector to the country’s economy and to balance the trade deficit by replacing the import-oriented economy with exports.
The study report prepared by the National Planning Commission on the effectiveness of the implementation of Trade Policy 2072 after analyzing the trade (import-export) situation for the last seven years states that no significant achievement has been made in this regard. Instead, the problem is said to have worsened. The report says that the import-export ratio was 8.5 percent in 2014 but has reached 11.9 percent in 2020, which cannot be considered positive.
The study found that the implementation of the Trade Policy 2072 has not been effective due to lack of action plan to implement the policy.
"The government is not solely responsible to implement any policy but the private sector also has an important role. However, the private sector has not been given any importance in the implementation of this policy,” the report states.
A scientific approach and research of various aspects of trade for trade including its development and promotion is vital for the trade policy. However, the report points out that no such scientific study or research has been done on any of the issues.
Furthermore, the study has found that there are problems due to the lack of institutional working directives for monitoring and evaluation for the effective implementation of the policy. There is policy level, institutional, procedural and legal shortcomings in the implementation of the policy and the expected results have not been achieved.
The report suggests that in order to effectively implement the trade policy, the institutionally established bodies should be active and necessary legal procedures and guidelines should be identified and formulated. The report also suggests identifying and formulating directives and prioritizing the implementation of trade policy while making annual programs.
Joint Secretary at the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Supplies Narayan Regmi said that it would take time for the results to come as the trade policy is in the process of implementation. He said that the ministry is ready to make the policy practical by including the current priorities such as the impact of Covid-19, which was not taken into consideration when the policy was drafted.
"We will study the issues and suggestions in the report and work accordingly," he said.