Nepal Economic Digest (April 28, 2020) « Khabarhub
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Nepal Economic Digest (April 28, 2020)

28 April 2020  

Time taken to read : 7 Minute

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KATHMANDU: Economic Digest, a daily morning email digest, is basically a relatable summation of important business news from Nepal into easy-to-understand summaries.

NEPSE suspends transaction until May 7

After the government extended the lockdown until May 7, Nepal Stock Exchange Limited (NEPSE) has also halted its transaction until the end of the lockdown.

A meeting of NEPSE on Monday decided to halt its transaction until the lockdown exists in the country.

Citing the concern on health issues to investors, brokers and stakeholders caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, it decided to close its office.

NRB to grant concession in fourth quarter interest

The Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) has announced that the current Rs 60 billion refinancing fund would be increased in near future to manage capital to mobilize in the coronavirus-affected businesses.

“The central bank will amend the Refinancing Procedures to mobilize the facility efficiently to the COVID-19 affected areas, including small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and tourism,” said NRB Governor Maha Prasad Adhikari in a speech delivered on the occasion of 63rd Anniversary of the bank.

He said that the provincial balance would also be maintained while leveraging the refinancing facility. According to Adhikari, concession would be granted in the interest of fourth quarter payment of loan in the current fiscal year and additional measures would be applied to simplify the process of bank loan mobilisation.

The NRB has also waived off the charge of electronic payments in order to facilitate and encourage people to make financial transactions during the lockdown period.

Four stores, including Bhatbhateni, fined

The Department of Commerce, Supplies and Consumer Protection has taken action on four shops including Bhatbhateni Departmental Store.

According to Spokesperson at the Department Rabindra Acharya, the department took fined the Tangal-based Bhatbhateni Departmental Store Rs 300,000 for charging more than MRP.

The Store was found charging Rs 220 for a product priced at Rs 120. Likewise, Amarawati Food Store was fined Rs 200,000 for selling food grains at a higher rate.

Similarly, the department fined MBT Food Suppliers Rs 100,000 and GN Store Rs 50,000.

The action was taken as per the Consumer Protection Act, 2075.

COVID-19: EU offers NPR 9.8 billion aid package to Nepal

The European Union (EU) said it is offering an aid package of NRs 9.8 billion (Euro 75 million) to Nepal to tackle the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic and mitigate its impact.

The support combines redirected existing commitments with new funds, granted in the form of budget support to allow the Government direct and swift access to this financing. In Nepal, the EU is mobilising NPR 9.8 billion (Euro 75 million) of which NPR 7.2 billion (Euro 55 million) is a reorientation of existing funds and NPR 2.6 billion (Euro 20 million) represents a new commitment.

The EU’s support will be directed at two areas: assisting the Nepalese authorities to respond to the immediate health crisis and boosting the country’s economic response and recovery.

The EU will give NPR 1.6 billion (Euro 12 million) to support the government’s health and preparedness plan.

The European Union has also contributed NPR 14.9 billion (Euro113.5 million) to the World Health Organisation to support countries under particular strain and with weaker health systems, including Nepal.

COVID-19 impact : 20% fall in electricity consumption

The Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) has predicted a decrease in its revenue in the current fiscal year owing to the decline in electricity consumption caused by the countrywide lockdown.

NEA which had the target of generating Rs 80 billion revenue this year, has predicted it won’t be able to make it happen due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the lockdown enforced to curb it.

The closure of industry, factories and business sectors due to lockdown the consumption of electricity has fallen by 20%.

According to NEA sources, the electricity authority gets Rs 32 billion from domestic use, Rs 32 billion from the industrial sector and rest from other sectors.

Generally, NEA collects Rs six billion rupees every month. But the lockdown has caused the decline in use and has also adversely affected the regular collection. Consumption has gone down by 20%.

82 thousand security personnel mobilized to enforce lockdown

The COVID-19 Crisis Management Centre (CCMC) has informed that that about 82 thousand 650 security personnel have been mobilized to enforce and manage the lockdown.

Seven thousand 486 personnel of the Nepal Army, 42 thousand 12 personnel of Nepal Police, 31 thousand 155 personnel of the Armed Police Force, and 1,997 personnel of the National Investigation Department have been mobilized.

In this connection, the Armed Police Force (APF ) has increased the number of checkpoints at the border from 650 to 1,212 for keeping a close watch on the movement across the country’s international border. APF has mobilized 22 thousand 616 of its personnel at these border check posts.

No Yarshagumba picking this season

Local levels in Bajhang have decided to restrict people from picking Yarshagumba this year in the wake of lockdown imposed to contain the novel coronavirus outbreak.

People from Surma, Saipal, Bungal and other local levels in the district used to go up to the mountainous to comb meadows for the rare medicinal herb. With the onset of the New Year, people here used to pick the Yarshagumba.

(Compiled and prepared by Swastik Aryal and Nitish Lal Shrestha)

Nepal Economic Digest is a daily morning email digest, basically relatable summations of the most important business news, happenings from Nepal into easy-to-understand summaries. The Institute for Strategic and Socio-Economic Research (ISSR), Nepal’s independent think tank, and Khabarhub — Nepal’s popular news portal — have joined hands to disseminate news from Nepal in the form of Economic Digest.

Publish Date : 28 April 2020 07:44 AM

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