KATHMANDU: The 25th meeting of Investment Board Nepal (IBN) was held on January 8 under the chairmanship of Rt. Hon. Prime Minister and chairman of the Board, Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’. The board made host decisions that will move IBN-monitored projects forward. These decisions also helped resolve some contentious issues. The meeting held at IBN Office New Baneshwore, directed to the Office of IBN to initiate the Project Development Agreement (PDA) talks with developers of Kathmandu Valley Integrated Solid Waste Management Project, deferring the provision of 0.2 percent service charge to be levied from developers.
Similarly, the meeting also decided to form a committee headed by a member of National Planning Commission, who oversees the infrastructure sector, to study on issues including Viability Gap Funding (VGF) for developing Metro Rail in Kathmandu Valley under Public Private Partnership (PPP) approach.
The panel comprises representatives from the Office of IBN, Ministry of Physical Infrastructure and Transport Ministry and Rail Department as its members. The team has been mandated to submit its report to the government within three months. The meeting also decided to finalize the proposed 122 projects under Project Bank and Project Idea Note developed by IBN Office, after necessary coordination with concerned ministries before they are made formally public.
Similarly, a decision has been made to extend the deadline for Financial Closure of Upper Karnali Hydropower Project and Arun-3 Hydropower Project to September 18 and September 30, 2017 respectively and directed to the developers of concerned projects to furnish the PDA plans to IBN Office at the earliest for completing the process of Financial Closures during the extended period. The meeting also decided to instruct the Ministry of Forest and Soil Conservation and the Ministry of Land Reform and Management to undertake necessary action in order to provide the technically required government land including forest land to both projects. The meeting also took a decision to give a final shape to the modality for development of 650-MW Tamakoshi-3 project in joint coordination between IBN Office and Ministry of Energy.
Speaking on the occasion, Prime Minister Dahal directed the high-ranking government officials to not create a situation where the projects get derailed by inaction on the government’s part. At the beginning of the meeting, Maha Prasad Adhikari, CEO of IBN, made a presentation on project updates and outstanding issues on implementation of projects under IBN purview. The meeting was attended by Deputy Prime Minister, Finance Minister, and Vice-Chair of the Board Krishna Bahadur Mahara, Minister for Energy Janardan Sharma, Minister for Local Development and Federal Affairs Hit Raj Pandey, Minister for Industry Nabindra Raj Joshi, Minister for Forest and Soil Conservation Shankar Bhandari, Vice Chairman of National Planning Commission Dr. Min Bahadur Shrestha, Chief Secretary of Nepal Government Dr. Som Lal Subedi, Governor of Nepal Rastra Bank Dr. Chiranjibi Nepal, IBN members from private sector Rajesh Kaji Shrestha and Bal Krishna Sibakoti, secretaries and other senior officials of the Nepal government. ●