New commerce minister vows to reduce trade deficit

Published On: July 31, 2017 02:30 AM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, July 30: The newly appointed Minister for Commerce, Min Bishwokarma, has expressed commitment to introduce programs to bring down country's trade deficit. 

“Our annual budget is Rs 1.2 trillion and we are facing trade deficit of nearly Rs 1 trillion. Our economy is becoming import-oriented. Our export-import ratio stands at 1:13 which is very unfortunate,” Minister Bhiswokarma said, speaking at a function in Kathmandu on Sunday. “I will bring programs aimed at narrowing down trade deficit even though I have a short tenure.”
He also said that the only way to reduce trade deficit is to increase export and bring down imports. “I will work to create an environment to export Nepali products in the international market. Similarly, the ministry will also introduce programs to identify exportable products and lower imports,” he added.

Bishwokarma said Nepal should make optimum benefits of its close neighbors India and China which are among the fastest growing economies in the world. “If we are to achieve economic prosperity, we need to have good foreign affairs and commerce policy,” he said, adding: “The government should put economic in the priority while signing treaties and agreements.”

He also said that the government will help private sector in manufacturing, processing, market management and export of their products, among others. 

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