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Nepal parliament ratifies 500 million US Dollar grant assistance with 'interpretative declaration'

ANI | Updated: Feb 28, 2022 00:09 IST


Kathmandu [Nepal], February 28 (ANI): Nepal's House of Representatives on Sunday has ratified 500 million US Dollar grant assistance-Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) pact along with "interpretative declaration".
Parliamentary meeting of Sunday which ran till late hours adopted a 12 point declaration called "interpretative declaration" which includes the government's answers on questions raised in the parliament.
"Voice of house members who are in support has been heard out loud thus proving the majority. Agreement between Government of Nepal and US aid agency Millennium
Challenge Corporation- Millennium Challenge Compact, as well as interpretative declaration, has been adopted by the House of Representatives as per the Constitution of Nepal's clause 279 and Rules of the parliament 2075, rule 230, a proposal to ratify it has thus been passed," House Speaker Agni Prasad Sapkota announced.
A meeting of the ruling alliance which commenced earlier in the day at Prime Minister Residence had adopted the 12 points which clearly states that the parties will not consider MCC a part of US military strategy (IPS).
"One of the parties of the compact, Nepal will not be part of United States of America's Indo-Pacific Strategy or any strategic, military or security alliance which has been announced hereby," Janardan Sharma, Finance Minister of Himalayan Nation read out the first statement of declaration despite protest from opposition CPN-UML.
Likewise, parties have also said that MCC Compact will not be above Nepal's constitution and laws. Adding, the MCC Compact will be taken only as financial assistance, and the audit should be done by the Office of the Comptroller and Auditor General of Nepal.
The declaration also said that they would even revert the decision on the basis of
political consensus. Prior to that, the ruling parties were in internal discussions on the

issue.
Rift had risen high within the ruling alliance before the adoption of the declaration which nearly had brought alliance formed against the former Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli to an end.
The US Government's MCC signed a USD 500 million compact with the Government of Nepal in September 2017 aimed at maintaining road quality, increasing the availability and reliability of electricity, and facilitating cross-border electricity trade between Nepal and India--helping to spur investments, accelerate economic growth, and reduce poverty.
This will help support Nepal to better deliver critical services to its people, ease the
movement of goods around the country, and open new opportunities for private
investment--all to create sustainable development for the people of Nepal.
According to MCC, strengthening the reliability of key infrastructure will put the country's economy on a firmer growth trajectory, advance stability, support regional security and reduce poverty.
An additional USD 130 million contributions from the Government of Nepal in support of the compact--the largest up-front partner country contribution in MCC's history--will enable even greater impact and benefits for the Nepali people.
The protest had continued in Nepali capital against the US grant compact as protestors fueled by disinformation continued to picket areas near federal parliament which always resulted in stone pelting, firing of tear gas and baton charge by Nepal Police.
It had become a subject of protest as deep-rooted rumour claiming it to be a military pact remained high. Though US Mission in Kathmandu had made attempt to clarify the issue, a misguided group of people continued to throng area near parliament on the day when the parliament meeting was called on for. (ANI)

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