As the biggest foreign investor in Nepal today what needs to be done to attract more foreign investment into the country?
For a developing country like Nepal, Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) plays a vital and direct role in ensuring economic growth and prosperity in terms of capital formation and technology transfers. Ease of doing business within the country has to be facilitated. Political stability, infrastructure availability, facilitation from government, bureaucracy, and the overall political climate must be supportive for foreign investors.
The Foreign Investment and Technology Transfer Act, amendment to the Industrial Enterprises Act, Special Economic Zone Act and Public Private Partnership and Investment Act came into force in the past two years. As one of the biggest foreign investors in Nepal, we take pride for being one of the highest tax payers of the country. From the time of its inception till date, Ncell has paid over Rs240 billion in taxes to the government, with Rs30.22 billion just in the last fiscal year.
Our direct and indirect contribution to the country’s GDP stood at 2 percent in 2018/19. As a committed investor in Nepal, we have made a substantial investment in infrastructure for service expansion and enhancing quality. We put in Rs32-35 billion annually in capex and opex investment that directly or indirectly drive the economy. Infrastructure such as telecommunications have strong links to growth, poverty alleviation and environmental sustainability.
Through our investments, we have introduced new technological solutions that has resulted in positive externalities such as direct economic benefits via employment, affordable means of communications resulting in social and economic benefits for our customers, better provision of social services like education and health, decentralisation and integration processes, human welfare and overall economic development.
We have created employment opportunities for more than 90,000 people. Increased investment from company like Ncell will contribute to expand the overall infrastructural base of the country and further support National Digital Nepal 2020 initiatives.