Nepal Budget 2077/78: Lots of promises to make Nepal digital through online education, telemedicine, online banking, National Payment Gateway, and multiple other initiatives
Yubaraj Khatiwada, Finance Minister of Nepal Government, has unveiled Rs 1.47 trillion budget for the fiscal year 2077/78. The budget plans to achieve the economic growth target of 7%. Interestingly, this year’s budget has promised a lot to adopt and utilize information technology to deliver various services to citizens: from telemedicine to online education, from national ID to electronic passport and visa, and from National Payment Gateway to satellite.
We have already entered the digital age. In this age, information technology has emerged as an essential tool and enabler in every sector. Investment in IT and its adoption would definitely help the economy. Thus, we should welcome the government’s initiative to promote the use of information technology.
In this article, we will present 13 takeaways from the budget, on information technology and digital payment. Let’s see in detail what’s waiting for the next fiscal year, and for the future of our nation.
Expanding digital banking
In the budget statement for this fiscal year, minister Khatiwada has made a special mention of electronic banking. The government has aimed to expand branchless banking, mobile banking, and Internet banking to remote areas and provide banking and financial services through electronic methods.
National Payment Gateway to come into operation
The government is planning to launch the long-awaited National Payment Gateway in this fiscal year. The national payment gateway is expected to decrease the cost of electronic transactions and encourage cashless transactions. The government will bring a digital payment system for electricity, water, health, education, and various other public services. With the national payment gateway in place, digital payment is expected to get a massive boost in the country.
Online Tax Payment
Small businesses transacting up to Rs 2 million annually can pay tax online through mobile app and various electronic methods, as per the budget statement.
Digitizing the Capital Market
The secondary market transactions of Nepal Stock Exchange Ltd. (NEPSE) will be fully digitized from this fiscal year.
Many villages still don’t have access to reliable health facilities. To fulfill this gap, the government has allocated a budget for the telemedicine service system. Various specialized hospitals like Gangalal National Heart Centre, Paropakar Maternity and Women’s Hospital, Human Organ Transplant Center, Bir Hospital, Kanti Children’s Hospital, etc. will provide service through telemedicine to the remote areas that don’t have proper access to health service.
Digital education and remote learning
Currently, educational institutions are closed because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The budget for this year has announced to run classes of new academic sessions through the Internet, television, and radio.
Driving license through online method
The government has planned to bring a system to issue driving license through online method. People can apply for a driving license online.
Digital Nepal Framework to be implemented
The government is all set to implement the Digital Nepal Framework and connect the country to the world economy with the use of digital technology and utilize economic opportunities. Similarly, policies regarding information technology, telecommunication, and broadband are to be revised. Likewise, Fiber-To-The-Home (FTTH) broadband Internet is to be expanded across the nation within the next two years. 4G service is to be expanded nationwide in this fiscal year itself.
National Knowledge Park to be established
Through the budget statement, the government has revealed to establish National Knowledge Park at Khumaltar, Lalitpur to promote a knowledge-based economy in the nation.
Security Printing Press and Nepal’s own Satellite
The government is set to build infrastructure and make arrangements for required machineries for the security printing press. Also, the government aims to operate its own satellite on the basis of business potential.
Online registration, biometric identification, and National ID
The government aims to make arrangements within the next three years for registration of personal incidents through online methods. Records of 1 crore Nepalis are to be updated on the electronic system for National Identity Card with biometric identification and unique number.
Land records system to go online
The government is planning to make use of technology to modernize all land revenue offices. Information technology-based land and property registration systems are to be implemented in all the districts. Malpot services across the nation are set to be digitized. The use of technology will make the service delivery of the offices simple, quick, and transparent.
Electronic Passport and Electronic Visa
Electronic passports are going to be implemented in Nepal from this fiscal year. Likewise, foreign nationals will be provided on arrival Visa through an online system.
Interested to know what’s more in this year’s budget? You can read the full budget statement from the website of the Ministry of Finance, here.
F1Soft group, a pioneer organization that initiated the concept of digital payments in Nepal, has an aim to raise the volume of digital transactions to 20% by the end of 2020. We have recently initiated the Digital 2020 campaign to shift the prevailing mindset in favor of digital payment platforms and transform the lives of people through digital finance. You can know more about our initiatives here.