Finance Minister urges Asian banks to invest in Nepal

Nov 09, Kathmandu- Finance Minister Dr. Prakash Sharan Mahat has urged Asian banks to invest in Nepal. At the conference of the Asian Bankers' Association that started here today, Finance Minister Dr. Mahat said that Nepal has a lot of potential for investment and called upon the Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) of the banks of the Asian countries to invest.

"There is great potential in Nepal for the private sector as well as foreign investors", Finance Minister Dr. Mahat said, "When India has promised to purchase 10,000 megawatts of hydropower in 10 years, there is a lot of potential for investment in hydropower." So invest in hydropower with confidence. The government is committed to facilitation.

He mentioned that the government will encourage green energy by arranging policies and making all sectors of the economy carbon-free, and the goal is to reach zero carbon emissions by the year 2045. The World Bank and the Asian Development Bank have also committed to invest in large hydropower projects in Nepal, he assured that the government will create an investment-friendly environment to attract foreign investment.

He said that foreign investment in Nepal's hydropower sector has been increasing recently. According to the finance minister, the government is making policy arrangements by giving top priority to power generation, small industries and agriculture.

On that occasion, Maha Prasad Adhikari, Governor of Nepal Rastra Bank mentioned that the country's economy is in a normal state amid various challenges and it is necessary to make it more dynamic. He said that it is time to completely restructure the resources of the banking sector in the area that directly contributes to economic growth, and it is necessary to achieve sustainable economic growth.

Governor Adhikari noted that inflation is moderate in most developed economies, adding that the country's inflation is still above the central bank's target. He said some emerging market and developing economies are still facing high inflation. He said, 'In the Middle East, the recently increasing Israel-Hamas war and the long-term Russia-Ukraine crisis have posed a challenge to maintain price stability. As a result, many central banks have continued to tighten through monetary policy. As a result, it seems that they have to face high interest rates for a long time.

Saying that Nepali Bank has made progress in a short time, the governor officer stressed on the need to develop digital banking system. Asian banks pointed out the need to make effective management by absorbing potential risks to prevent the increase of bad loans.

Governor Adhikari said that rapid technological change has brought many benefits to the banking system and it is transforming banking into a business, and emphasized that it should be easy for its sustainability.

The President of the Asian Bankers Association, Eugene Acevedo, pointed out the need to advance an effective planning program with cooperation for the sustainability of the overall economy of the Asian countries. He expressed his belief that the conference will help in conceptualizing the future strategy of the Asian Bank.

The President of Nepal Bankers Association, Sunil KC, expressed his belief that the conference with the CEOs of banks from Asian countries, which was organized for the first time in Nepal, will help the Nepali banking sector to rise from the challenging situation and decide a long-term strategy on how to play an effective role in the future.

More than 60 bank and financial sector representatives from 18 member countries participated in the two-day conference jointly organized by Nepal Bankers Association and Asian Bankers Association.