Nepal Today

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Rs 2 billion loss in commodity trading

Kathmandu, 26 Nov: Nepali traders have lost nearly Rs 2 billion in losses after steep fall in prices of industrial raw materials in the international market, Kanipour reports.
The losses were suffered after prices of steel, palm oil, plastic granules, soya bean oil and vegetable ghee halved when the goods arrived at customs points after LCs were opened.
Prices of commodities in stores have also fallen sharply.
“In three months, losses accumulated to $10.75 million. LCs totaling $ 30.51 million were opened,” acting Nepal Rashtra Bank (NRB) Governor Krishna Bhadur Manandhar said.
According to NRB, altogether 102 LCs were opened.
“Commodity prices have halved after LCs were opened in October,“ Manandhar said.
The central bank has adopted a cooperative policy to help traders.
Repayment of loans have been eased through rescheduling payment from 90 to 180 days.

Danish foreign minister arriving; other details

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 26 Nov: Danish Foreign Minister Dr Per Stig Moller arrives Wednesday on a four-day visit as his Indian counterpart Pranab Mukherjee leaves after ending a the-day official visit Wednesday.
Moller will discuss the prevailing political situation, including the implementation of the peace process, the Danish embassy said.
It’s no coincidence that the three ministers from three foreign capitals are in town when Maoists are deeply divided as a hard-line group pushes the immediate imposition of a communist state through revolt.
The ministers were in town as Maoists were on a ‘great debate’ whether to immediately declare a republic opposed by Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda who has been described as a ‘ renegade revisionist’.
Prachanda succeeded in delaying the debate until a party general convention in June 2009 to give continuity to the Maoist-led government while maintaining a fragile unity in the party.
India was concerned the peace process was tottering after main opposition Nepali Congress broke with Maoists and lunched a national awareness campaign threatening non-cooperation with the government ked by Prime Minister Prachanda.
India is concerned the 12-point New Delhi accord it pushed between Maoists and seven parliamentary parties in 2005 bringing Maoists into Nepali mainstream politics may lose its utility
Manmohan Singh government sent Mukherjee to patch up differenced between Congress president Girija Prasad Koirala and Premier Prachanda.
But Koirala was firm and adamant in his criticism of Maoists during his hour-long meeting with the India visitor.
Mukherjee returns hope with a message Koirala is adamant and will continue his non-cooperative with Maoists threatening the peace process and creating in certainty in Nepali politics.
Mukherjee cultivated Sher Bahadur Deuba one day before meeting Koirala in an effort to isolate the ageing octogenarian leader.
But Koirala isn’t ready to handover party leadership to Deuba or retire from active politics yet.
Koirala has become a thorn in India’s side as new Delhi pushes broader cooperative relations with major stakeholders to end the transition from monarchy to a republic.
That was the only purpose of Mukherjee’s visit to Nepal; bilateral issues had been discussed two times by Singh and Prachanda in New Delhi in three months.
Relations had been brought back on track but the Indian brokered peace agreement ran into foul weather.
Mukherjee returned home Wednesday without any agreement on the bilateral front because he hadn’t come to Nepal to resolve any major bilateral issues.
Denmark, has been playing a larger than life role in Nepal, with its deep influence among communists in the Himalayan state.
The small Scandinavian monarchical state run by a Left government is keen Maoists succeed in Nepal where the minister is coming with a mission to persuade the CPN (Maoist).
Great Britain, which claims to be Nepal’s largest development partner, too is concerned with the uncertainty in Nepal.
Visiting Minister International Development Mark Foster urged all sides to complete he peace process for sustainable development.
Chinese are not far behind.
Foreign minister of Nepal’s northern neighbour is arriving next month to pave the way for Prachanda’s expected official China visit.

Congress says GP Koirala is leader of party’s parliamentary party

Kathmandu, 26 Nov: Even without formal election, main opposition Nepali Congress has confirmed Girija Prasad Koirala it the leader of the party’s parliamentary party.
Sher Bahadur Deuba and Ram Chandra
Paudel were aspirants for the position.
Paudel, the party vice-president, kept sheepishly quiet when Koirala admonished him for declaring his candidacy for the post saying the declaration came too early.
The office of the Congress parliamentary party informed constitutional council secretariat Tuesday Koirala was the party’s leader in the constituent assembly which also acts as the legislature.
The council has asked the CA and the main opposition who was the leader after the council as obstructed.
The leader of the main opposition is an ex-officio member of the council headed by the prime minister.
It couldn’t make appointments to constitutional bodies with the vacancy.
All other parties in the CA had elected their leaders.

Prachanda presents unity compromise proposal

By Bhola B Rana

Kathmandu, 26 Nov: Shelving an immediate decision on imposing a communist state through revolt, Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda Wednesday presented an alternative proposal to 1,2000 national workers for adoption and endorsed by the central committee.
The central committee decided Tuesday night to shelve the debate temporarily until party general convention takes a decision on the ‘principle’ probably next June.
Amid fears of a split in the party that was catapulted to power three months ago following a 11-year people’s war and a movement against monarchy, the central committee said it took the decision for party ‘unity’.
‘The new proposal is Prachanda’s proposal,” one top leader said.
The fresh compromise party position amalgamates ‘positive points’ including Prachanda’s proposal for a transitional republic and organization Chief Mohan Baidya Kiran’s suggestion for a people’s republic though revolt.
The national meet, which began Friday, is expected to endorse the fresh compromise proposal of Prachanda.
The second meeting of the party central committee couldn’t agree on the republican form Tuesday even after an extended meeting.
It was assigned responsibility to prepare a common concept instead.
“We are now going to the people with a message of unity not division,” Maoist lawmaker Khim Lal Debkota said.
He explained Organization Chief Kiran’s thought saying ‘a people’s republic should not be a party strategy in which all communists believe in but a party business policy’.
Elucidating Kiran’s thimnking further, Deokota said ,” He [Kiran] thinks the movement has only toppled monarchy. The [CPN Maoist] don’t have a majority[in the CA] to implement its agenda.”
He quoted Kiran as saying “We have reached power but we still have an old culture.”
Earlier reports said Kiran warned Maoists in Nepal could meet the fate of communists overthrown in Indonesia and Chile.
The CPN (Maoist) is equally divide on a transitional republic and people’s republic at a time when the CA has to draft a constitution with the support of two-thirds majority in the 601-member assembly.
Main opposition Nepali Congress, the second largest party in the CA, said it will oppose tooth and nail attempts to impose a communist state in the strategic nation, sand-witched between Asian giants, India and China.


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