Sunday, March 15, 2009

Nepali industries crisis-hit, declares business community

The industrialists today declared industrial crisis, blaming the government apathy for the same.
“The industries are vulnerable due to long hours of power outage, labour disputes and insecurity,” Pradeep Jung Pandey, vice-president of Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FNCCI) said.
“As responsible citizens, the business fraternity cannot burn tyres and call bandh — the only language the government understands,” the vice-president of umbrella organisation of Nepali private sector said, adding, “We have been compelled to declare crisis as the situation is grim and the government is not serious.”
The district chambers and commodity associations under FNCCI, Nepal Chambers of Commerce (NCC) and Confederation of Nepalese Industries (CNI) met at the FNCCI headquarters in Teku here late in the evening for emergency meeting and declared Industrial Crisis themselves.
“We have decided not to pay demand charge for electricity as our industries have been reeling under 16-hour daily load-shedding,” he said. The industry captains are also planning to submit a memorandum to the prime minister urging him to address their problems immediately.
“The government is concerned only about revenue collection and has been neglecting our problems,” alleged Surendra Bir Malakar, president of NCC. Though the Maoists-led government claims of national industrial capatilism, the domestic industries are the worst-hit due to labour disputes with the trade unions related to the ruling coalition, and the power crisis.
Earlier, the government had declared Energy Crisis, but did nothing concrete for the interrupted power supply for the industrialists. “The power crisis won’t be solved for another five years,” said Pandey. During the decade-long conflict also the industrialists were not so hopeless.
“The government must immediately address power crisis, stop strikes in the industries and come up with a rescue package for the industries,” Malakar urged.
During the mid-term budget review, Finance Minister Dr Baburam Bhattarai had accepted that the desired growth target could not be achieved. The adverse conditions in the country has reduced the growth as the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) has also reduced the growth forecast to 3.8 per cent from the government’s seven per cent growth target.
The manufacturing sector will have a negative growth of 0.5 per cent, according to the CBS.

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