KATHMANDU, January 19, 2015 – Annette Dixon, the World Bank’s Vice President for South Asia, today congratulated the Government on the progress it has made and encouraged Nepal to persist with its economic reforms aimed at fostering sustained growth to benefit all the people in the country.
During a three-day official visit, Dixon held meetings with Prime Minister Sushil Koirala and senior Government of Nepal officials including Finance Minister Ram Sharan Mahat, Energy Minister Radha Kumari Gyawali, Governor of Nepal Rastra Bank Yubaraj Khatiwada and Chief Executive Officer of the Nepal Investment Board, Radhesh Pant, to discuss the government’s development priorities and the World Bank’s program of support to Nepal in the areas of investment, infrastructure and inclusion.
“Nepal has made remarkable progress in overcoming poverty and spreading shared prosperity more widely among its people,” Dixon said at the conclusion of her visit. “It now has the chance to build critical infrastructure, including major hydropower projects. This will draw in investment funds, improve the climate for businesses, help create jobs, and reduce poverty as well as boost shared prosperity in Nepal.”
In widely publicized policy notes shared with the government of Nepal, the World Bank has recommended an agenda of investment, infrastructure and inclusion. It says that a core task for the country will be to tap its hydropower potential to solve energy shortages and boost public income through electricity trade with India, as well as to develop transport infrastructure. An inclusive agenda should focus on agricultural productivity and income, and inclusive social sector policies targeting lower income and marginalized groups, it recommends.
During her stay Dixon visited various projects supported by the World Bank and held discussions with project beneficiaries. This included a Rural Water Supply and Sanitation scheme and a community managed secondary school in Dhulikhel and beneficiaries of the Adolescent Girls Employment Initiative in Bhaktapur. She also met with development partners and representatives of civil society.
This is Dixon’s first official visit to Nepal since her appointment on December 15, 2014 as the Bank’s Vice President for South Asia.