Sunday, June 3, 2012

OFID pledges $20 million assistance loan

The OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) has agreed to provide a loan assistance of $20 million (about Rs 1,680 million) to Nepal for the implementation of the Rural Connectivity and Community Development Project.
Joint secretary and chief of the foreign aid coordination division of the ministry of finance Lal Shanker Ghimire and director general of the OPEC Fund for International Development on behalf of Nepal Suleiman J Al-Herbishand signed the loan assistance agreement and exchanged it at the OFID headquarters in Vienna, Austria on Friday.
Co-financed by the Asian Development Bank, the project aims at improving the connectivity of rural communities, enhancing economic and employment opportunities and increasing access to market and social services.
The loan assistance received as co-financing from OFID will be utilised to promote rural economic and social development through small–scale infrastructure and capacity building sub-projects.
The project will be implemented in 18 districts — Baglung, Baitadi, Bajhang, Bajura, Darchula, Dolpa, Gorkha, Humla, Jajarkot, Jumla, Kalikot, Lamjung, Myagdi, Mugu, Okhaldhunga, Ramechhap, Solukhumbu and Taplejung — and expected to be completed by December 31, 2016.
Nepal expressed its sincere appreciation to the OPEC Fund for International Development for this loan assistance and for their continued support in the socio-economic development of Nepal.
Among the donors, OPEC had contributed 0.5 per cent in the total disbursed foreign aid in Nepal in fiscal year 2010-11, according to the Development Cooperation Report 2010-11 published by the Finance Ministry which has started making aid transparent due to allegations that foreign aid lacked effectiveness due to lack of transparency .
The need for greater transparency in foreign aid flows features very prominently in the commitments made initially in the Paris declaration in 2005 and subsequent High Level Forums, the latest being the High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness held in Busan, Korea, in December 2011. Nepal has been extensively involved in international efforts to improve the quality of information available from development partners on the nature and volume of their assistance.

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