National Planning Commission has organized a two-day regional workshop on Public Private Partnership (PPP) in Bharatpur, Chitawan from 5 to 6 Magh 2074. The objective of the workshop was to share and disseminate the PPP Policy – 2072 with the private sector entrepreneurs and investors, newly elected local leaders of municipalities, and the district level government officials.
Inaugurating the workshop Dr. Sunil Babu Shrestha, Honorable Member of NPC opined that the role of private sector as envisaged in the Fourteenth Plan of the country is immense to mobilize resources for investment. Stating that the economy has experienced high growth rate of about 7.0 percent in F.Y. 2073/74, he stressed the need of sustaining this high growth by creating investment climate and mobilizing private sector in infrastructure development works. Dr. Shrestha highlighted the importance of adopting and implementing PPP modality for fast development works.
Highlighting the role of public officials and the private sector business community, he emphasized that partnership between these two group would create new PPP initiations in development works. He urged for better public sector support and enabling investment environment for attracting private sector in utilizing their resources and management skills in joint investment initiations of government and private sector.
The chair of the inaugural session of the two-day workshop, Ms. Renu Dahal, the Mayor of Bharatpur Metropolitan said that utilizing the PPP modality the private sector should come forward primarily in infrastructure projects. She reiterated that efforts should be made to increase access to resources for investment, and to involve private sector in decision-making process under PPP modality.
The workshop believed to be contributed to orient various stakeholders about the importance of PPP to invest and facilitate infrastructure development and management, and to create a group of critical mass to further make aware the policy to the general people.
Representing the private sector, Mr. Sahan Lal Pradhan, Chairperson of Chitawan Chamber of Commerce and Industry said that a concrete program should be initiated to harness the natural resources of the district. He opined that it is high time now to collaborate jointly with the public sector under PPP modality to invest in several infrastructure projects such as hydropower and tourism for the fast economic growth and development. He asked the government's higher consideration to Chitawan district for its road and air connectivity and other infrastructure development programs.
Ms. Parbati Shah Thakuri Deputy-Mayor of Bharatpur Metropolitan emphasized that role of trainings and capacity development programs to the newly elected members on various facets of PPP. Mr Narayan Prasad Bhatta, Chief District Officer of Chitawan district highlighted the importance of PPP approach in development endeavors.
Likewise, Chief of District Coordination Committee, Krishna Kumar Dallakoti, appreciated National Planning Commission for organizing the workshop in Chitawan District.
Scores of papers were presented in the workshop ranging from (i) comparative analysis of PPP policy and BOOT act; (ii) Types of PPP, PPP project cycle and its implementation in local level; (iii) Prospects of Private sector in PPP: its role and challenges; (iv) Importance of PPP in Local governance: Status, challenges and way forward; (v) Local level prospects of Private sector in PPP and (vi) Good governance in PPP.
Dr. Sunil Babu Shrestha presented the paper on the theme of the concept, policy, challenges and opportunities for the promotion and execution of PPP. In his paper he emphasized that in the context of present election of local government of rural and urban municipalities, there has been immense pressure to the local as well as federal governments to develop infrastructures like express highways, airports, cable cars, hydroelectric projects and so on. He emphasized that the federal government can collaborate with local government and private sector in order to mobilize fund for investment and execution of those projects.
A total of 130 officials of district level line agencies and municipalities, civil society, private sector, and media participated in the workshop. In the workshop, PPP policy was discussed in three different groups. The groups mainly urged that the government should create conducive environment for mobilizing private sector in different thematic areas of the economy as indicated by the PPP Policy, 2016. The groups were of the view that government can help generate fund not only from national treasury but also from international agencies. It has been obvious that government, both-federal and local as well as private sector should work together to invest in big projects. For these all a high political commitment and a strengthened enabling environment along with political consensus is needed to adopt PPP modality at all the levels.