KATHMANDU, March 1: Nepal’s private sector has welcomed the ratification of the US-funded Millenium Challenge Corporation (MCC) compact agreement through parliament.
In separate press releases, the Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FNCCI) and the Confederation of Nepalese Industries (CNI) on Monday - two umbrella organizations of the private sector - have stated that the ratification will help strengthen bilateral ties with the US along with construction of the strategic infrastructure projects for the development of the country. The government signed an agreement with the US-funded MCC on September 14, 2017.
The compact will incorporate the construction of high power transmission lines and road maintenance, which have been identified as the main drivers to boost the economic growth of the landlocked country. According to the CNI, the 400 kV stretch along Lapsifedi-Ratamate-Hetauda and Ratamate-Damauli-Butwal and related substations will aid in improvement of domestic electricity distribution system and cross-border electricity trading. “Similarly, the improvement of the road segment of Kapilvastu-Dang of the East-west Highway will be important for economic development, trade facilitation and uplifting livelihood of the people in the region.”
The FNCCI has stated that the projects under MCC will be helpful to the economy which has shrunk due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, it is equally important that the stakeholders should be vigilant to realize optimum benefit out of the five-year planned project, FNCCI says.