Former finance ministers call for common economic agenda
KATHMANDU, June 23: Leaders of Nepali Congress and CPN-UML, who handled the finance portfolio under different governments in the past, have opined that the country´s economic base could be laid down only by forging consensus with all the parties.
Speaking at a program organized by the Media Vision here on Saturday, they stressed the need for setting a common economic agenda on priority basis. Nepali Congress leader Mahesh Acharya pointed out the need for all the political parties to forge ahead by arriving at a consensus as they have a common economic agenda in the present situation.
He added that the present government should not bring a full-fledged budget as its very legitimacy is under question and suggested that it should bring only a vote-on-accounts bill as per the Article 96 (A) of the Interim Constitution.
UML leader Bharat Mohan Adhikari said the budget has become uncertain due to constitutional crisis and stressed that a government of national consensus would be the only solution in such a situation.
Stating that this government of the UCPN (Maoist) and the Madhesi Front could not be relied upon as it announced the date for the election to a new Constituent Assembly without consulting the other political parties, Adhikari called on the prime minister to immediately step down and help build conducive environment for bringing the budget.
Meanwhile, Finance Minister Barsha Man Pun on the day met UCPN (Maoist) Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal and sought the latter´s help in bringing full-fledged budget.
On the occasion, Dahal said he was positive about bringing fiscal budget after forging political consensus as NC and CPN-UML too have been pressing for it.
The National Planning Commission (NPC) has directed the finance ministry to bring a budget of Rs 429 billion and works are underway to bring the budget within the ceiling, Finance Secretary Krishna Hari Baskota said.