Monday, April 6, 2015

One hour of bandh bleeds economy Rs 150 million

The economy bleeds Rs 150 million directly due to per hour of strike, according to a study.
The three-day bandh called by the UCPN-Maoist led 30-party alliance will bleed economy Rs 5.40 billion in three days, according to the study conducted by the central bank on 'the economic impact of general strikes', which revealed that one day of a nationwide strike causes a loss of about Rs 1.80 billion directly, most of which is borne by the service and industry sectors.
However, the entrepreneurs estimated the losses to be at Rs 3 billion per day at the current rates as the bandh has domino impact on economy. The private sector claims that the economy will bleed Rs 250 million per hour as of today.
The alliance has called three day strike from Wednesday to Friday to pressurise the government. Requesting the 30-party alliance led by the UCPN-Maoist to withdraw the three-day strike, the private sector has called for more creative form of protest except disturbing the business and economic activities.
The bandh – called to pressurise the government – will not only bleed the economy blue, but also curtails the fundamental constitutional rights of a common man. The constitution has ensured a free movement of a person apart from freedom of choice of profession and economic freedom.
Likewise, political stability in recent years has helped create investment-friendly environment in the country. So, the private sector has asked the parties not to disturb the investment-friendly environment.
Federation of Nepalese Chmbers of Commerce and Industry (FNCCI), Confederation of Nepalese Industry (CNI) and Nepal Chambers of Commerce (NCC) have urged the political parties not to disturb the investment-friendly environment.
They have also urged the parties to expedite the process of promulgation of the constitution and end the political instability, and shun any strikes that will again pull the economic growth down.
The central bank study – based on data and strike incidents in period from 2008 to 2013 – also revealed that such recurring bandas has a total output loss of Rs 27 billion on average per year. "It has brought down some 1.4 per cent of GDP growth per year from 2008 to 2013," the central bank study stated.
The private sector fears that strikes and protests would once again dampen investors’ confidence. "Investors will run away if they face a sense of insecurity and uncertainty," FNCCI vice president Pashupati Muraraka said, adding that the strikes could not by any means address any problem.
Likewise, Hotel Association Nepal (HAN) has also urged to withdraw bandh, saying its impact on the tourism industry would be huge, long-lating and directly or indirectly hit livelihood of over 4.5 million people. Strike induced uncertainty will hit the tourist arrivals, it added. "As such strikes would have adverse impacts in the economy by discouraging investors and worsening the business environment in the country.

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