On March 29, 2017, a regional level workshop on Public Private Partnership (PPP) was organized by the National Planning Commission in Biratnagar. The main objective of this event was to disseminate the PPP Policy – 2072 among the investors and entrepreneurs of the private sector and the field level government officials engaged in local initiatives for infrastructure development and management. The workshop was also intended towards creating a critical mass who can comprehend the policy and further disseminate to the general people.
Dr. Sunil Babu Shrestha, Honorable Member of NPC and the Chief Guest of the inaugural session said that the time has come to think beyond the poverty alleviation agenda of the country. Highlighting the need for promoting private sector through the PPP modality, he emphasized that fast economic growth and development could be achieved through resource base and management skills of the private sector where the government sector can support through ensuring enabling and supportive environment. Elaborating the initiations undertaken by the Government, Dr. Shrestha said that the outcome of the workshops will help amend few issues of the PPP Policy and enrich the draft of the proposed PPP Bill.
Welcoming the participants of the workshop, Mr. Sanjaya Kumar Khanal, Joint Secretary, NPC Secretariat explained the progress in expediting PPP implementation. He stressed that earlier initiations and the laws need to be consolidated in the form of PPP Act and Bylaws. He viewed that establishment of PPP Centre and finalization of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) would accelerate the pace of PPP's implementation.
Representing the private sector, Mr. Kishore Kumar Pradhan, Vice-president of the FNCCI said that both public and private sectors should work jointly and share the investment, risk and benefit on fifty-fifty basis. Clarity must be made in all the steps of PPP procedures and political commitment must be ensured to commence new investment initiations He said that the new PPP initiation of government will have a sustained impact on economic growth and development.
The Chief District Officer (CDO) of Morang, Mr Yagaya Raj Koirala said that PPP will have positive impact on promoting joint initiations of the government, private sector and the civil society. To make the PPP effective, efforts should also be made to identify the viable projects, access to resources for investment, representation of private sector in decision-making, selection of import substitution led enterprises, and sharing of the returns among the different stakeholders.
Chairing the two-day workshop, Mr Rajeshwor Man Singh, Eastern Regional Administrator highlighted that the Government is keen on expediting the participation of private sector through PPP modality. In this context, he emphasized that identification of projects based on the interest of the private investors would be a viable option for expediting PPP even at the local levels.
Presenting the paper on the theme of the concept, policy, challenges and opportunities, Hon’ble Dr. Shrestha reiterated that opportunities for investment are immense in the areas of construction and development of hydropower, physical infrastructure in emerging urban municipalities, fast track highways, airports, cable cars and so on. However, the challenges are also immense in terms of implementation. He said that this requires political commitment and a strengthened enabling environment along with political consensus to adopt PPP modality at both the village and municipality government levels and the provincial government levels.
Other six PPP related papers were presented in the workshop, such as role of private sector and challenges; facets of PPP Policy 2072; issues of governance; international practices; possibility of promoting PPP at local levels; and project cycle. A total of 80 participants: officials of district level line agencies and urban municipalities, civil society, private sector, and media were present in the workshop.