Finance Minister Yubaraj Khatiwada unveils budget for fiscal year 2020/21. (Photo: RSS)
KATHMANDU: The government announced the Federal Budget of Rs 1,474.64 billion for the fiscal year 2020/21.
Finance Minister Dr Yubaraj Khatiwada, in his budget speech, said a total of Rs 948.94 (64.4%) billion has been allocated for the recurrent expenditure.
Likewise, a total of Rs 352.91 (23.9%) billion was allocated for capital expenditure and 172 (11.7%) billion has been allocated for financial management in the next fiscal year.
Similarly, the budget 2020/21 has targeted to raise a total of Rs 889.62 billion through revenue collection.
It has also aimed at raising Rs 60.52 billion through foreign assistance. Likewise, the budget has also aimed at raising Rs 225 billion and Rs 299.50 billion through internal and external debts, respectively.
Similarly, the government has also set an economic growth target at 7 percent for the next fiscal year.
The government says it will keep the inflation rate target at 7 percent for the next fiscal year.
Likewise, the government will add a total of 1,300 MW of electricity to the national grid in the nest fiscal year.
Finance Minister announced the addition in electricity supply based on the completion of the Upper Sanjen and Upper Tamakoshi hydropower projects. Both the projects are near completion.
Likewise, Minister Dr Khatiwada announced about prioritizing alternative sources of energy including solar energy, hydropower, and production of electricity from organic waste.
“The government has allocated Rs 4.13 billion for this purpose,” he said while unveiling the budget.
He said that the installation of around 200 mini solar energy plants in the rural areas will prioritized.
On the occasion, he said that the government would subsidize the use of electricity for kitchen use such as cooking, electrical vehicles and industries.
Govt prioritizes health sector
The government has given priority to the health sector in the budget of the coming fiscal year.
According to Khatiwada, the emphasis has been laid on expanding the scope of health services and building health infrastructure among others.
Dr. Khatiwada said that a significant budget has been allocated in the health sector for the prevention of coronavirus infection and the improvement of the health system.
He said the budget has been allocated to set up quarantine and resources and increase the scope of testing in high-risk areas.
He said a budget of Rs 6 billion has been allocated for the control of coronavirus infection. Similarly, free health insurance of up to Rs 500,000 will be provided for doctors and health workers.
Meanwhile, the budget of the Ministry of Health and Population has been increased from Rs. 68.78 billion to Rs. 90.69 billion for the coming Fiscal Year. The budget for the coming fiscal year is 22.09 billion more than the current fiscal year.
The government has allocated Rs 12.66 billion for the health sector infrastructure.
Rs 5.10 billion has been allocated to start the ‘One Doctor, One Health Institution Program’ program and Rs 14.72 billion has been allocated for the construction of 272 more health institutions at the local level.
Similarly, Rs. 4.22 billion has been allocated for the treatment of diseases such as tuberculosis and sexually transmitted diseases.
Basic hospitals with 5 to 15 beds will be established and upgraded at each local level, while former district hospitals will be upgraded to 25 to 50 beds and zonal hospitals to 200 beds general hospitals.
Modern health desks and quarantine houses will be set up at international airports and major international border checkpoints
It has been said in the budget that a 300-bed communicable disease hospital will be constructed in the Kathmandu Valley, a 250-bed ICU bed will be set up in the Kathmandu Valley and the state capital, and a 50-bed communicable disease hospital will be operated in all the state.
Similarly, Pokhara Hospital, Karnali Institute of Health Sciences, Koshi Hospital, Narayani Hospital, Bheri Hospital and Dadeldhura Hospital will be developed as specialist hospitals.
A total of Rs 12 billion has been allocated for the development of health infrastructure.
20 percent exemption in income tax for tourism entrepreneurs
The government has announced 20 percent exemption in income tax for tourism entrepreneurs.
A 20 percent exemption has been made in the income tax levied on airline, hotel, transport, travel and trekking.
Similarly, the time for filing value added tax and tax for tourism, transportation and cinema houses has been made quarterly. Likewise, Finance Minister Khatiwada announced a package to boost small businesses to revive the Corona-affected economy.
He informed that 75 percent exemption has been provided to the entrepreneurs doing business up to Rs 2 million, 50 percent to those doing business from Rs 2 million to Rs 5 million and 25 percent to the taxpayers doing business from Rs 5 million to Rs 10 million.