Saturday, September 14, 2013

Finance Ministry to monitor large projects online

At a time, when the government is blamed for low capital expenditure, Finance Ministry is planning to monitor large projects worth more than Rs 150 million online that is expected to expedite the spending.
From the October beginning, the ministry will be able to online monitor large projects, according to the ministry that has expected to meet trimester spending target of the capital budget due to regular online monitoring. "The executing agencies will online submit their spending details, which will be tracked by the ministry, and if necessary immediately intervene and expedite the capital expenditure."
The ministry can online monitor details like date of approval for authorisation of spending , budget sanction, contract tender award and payment to the contractors.
Some 200 projects fall under the category of large projects as they exceed Rs 150 million budget. However, the ministry will be able to monitor only a quarter of the projects – around 65 projects – this year.
The monitoring report will also be discussed at a meeting chaired by the finance minister every two months.
National Planning Commission (NPC) usually monitors and supervises the large projects, but the slow spending has always been blamed on Finance Ministry.
Thus, the online monitoring by the Finance Ministry will ensure the timely budget spending according to the trimester target. The targeted trimester spending is key also due to a wrong tradition of spending the budget on the last month of the fiscal year, that had never brought quality output.
According to ‘Economic Update of Nepal,’ published by Asian Development Bank (ADB), some 43 per cent of the capital budget was spent in the last month – with 64 per cent in the last quarter – in the last fiscal year 2012-13.
“It raises concern about not only the absorbing capacity but also the procedural and procurement delays along with the realistic expenditure planning of the capital budget,” the ADB report added.
The government had allocated Rs 66.13 billion capital budget in the last fiscal year 2012-13, “but spent Rs Rs 51.51 billion,” according to Financial Comptroller General Office (FCGO) that keeps tracks of government spending.

No comments: