Nepal Today

Monday, March 18, 2013

SHARE PRICES CONTINUE TO TUMBLE Kathmandu, 18 March: Stock prices fell for the second consecutive day Monday immediately after trading opened at the stock market. Political change hasn’t gathered confidence in stock investors. Nepse index fell to 530.72 points losing 4.49 points. Investors in commercial bank and hydro power shares were the biggest losers. Commercial bank shares lost 6.74points and price of hydro power shares fell 8.93 points. nnnn CPN-MAOST EXPLAINS POSITION ON REGMI GOVT. TO KATHMANDU-BASED ENVOYS Kathmandu, 18 March: The CPN-Maoist has urged ambassador s of various countries to Nepal to review their decision to support the appointment of the chief justice as the Chairman of the Interim Election Government, RSS reports.. Issuing a statement in the Capital on Monday, Chief of the party's Foreign Relations Department CP Gajurel has said the party's attention was drawn towards the present political developments and the support by ambassador s to the CJ-led government. Describing the 25-point and 11-point agreement as an agreement of the major leaders of the UCPN (Maoist), Nepali Congress, CPN-UML and the Madhesi front, Gajurel has argued that the amendment to 24 articles of the interim constitution in the name of 'removing difficulties' was unconstitutional. The party has, in the statement, appealed to the governments and representatives of friendly nations to review their support to the recent developments, which, it said, are against the interest of Nepal nation and Nepali people. RSS nnnn RPP-NEPAL CAMPAIGN FOR HINDU STATE Kathmandu, 18 March: The Rastriya Prajatantra Party-Nepal has begun a signature campaign with the objective of reinstating Nepal as a Hindu State, RSS reports.. RPP-N Chairman Kamal Thapa initiated the campaign at a function held at Basantpur durbar square in the Capital on Monday. The campaign will run until coming April 28, according to information shared at the programme. Earlier, a rally taken out by the party passed through Maitighar, Tripureswor, Martyrs Gate and New Road before converging into the mass meeting at Basantpur. RSS nnnn REQUIREMENT FOR FIVE-YEAR VISA Kathmandu, 18 March: The government has introduced standards on the basis of which it will issue five-year business visas to foreign investors for their convenience. The standard prepared by Department of Industry (DoI) has identified volume of investment, contribution to revenue, employment generation and quantity of exports as the four major criteria for issuing the five-year business visas. As per the draft of the standard, investors will receive a five-year business visa on the condition that they have invested US$ 200,000 in their enterprise through banking channels within the last three years. “If the investor is a company, the government will provide the same visa to any two representatives recommended by the company,” states the draft. However, no such visa will be issued to representatives of individual investors. In terms of criteria regarding revenue contribution, the draft states that the government will issue the visa to foreign investors provided their company has contributed income tax worth Rs 200,000 on an average for the last three consecutive years. Moreover, if the investor’s company pays Rs 100,000 additionally, the government will issue the visa to another investor. “The number of investors eligible to receive the visa will keep on growing every year by one until the company keeps on paying an additional Rs 100,000 as income tax annually,” adds the draft. The draft which was approved by a minister-level decision of the Ministry of Industry (MoI) on March 13, was implemented by the DoI on March 14. As per the set criteria, each investor employing at least 50 Nepali individuals will be eligible for the five-year visa. Moreover, once the investor employs another 20 individuals, it will be eligible for another investor of the company to receive the visa. And the number of investors becoming eligible for the visa will be gradually increased with the increment of additional 20 Nepali individuals. Moreover, investors will receive the visa if their company exports goods worth Rs 20 million annually on an average. If the industry exports goods worth Rs 40 million during the period, two investors from the company will receive the visa, and similarly three investors will receive the visa if the company has exported goods totalling Rs 60 million during the period. Dhruba Raj Rajbanshi, director general of the DoI, said the provision had been introduced to offer special recognition to foreign investors who really bring investments in the country. Though the five-year business visa provision has already been mentioned in the Foreign Investment and Technology Transfer Act 1992, there were no standards based on which such visas would be issued. Foreign investors so far have been receiving one-year tourist visas which are renewed for another single year. Rajbanshi said that the provision for the one-year tourist visa would remain intact for new foreign investors, and the would receive the five-year visa once they submit evidence of fulfilling of any of the new criteria set by government. As per the draft, once investors receive the business visa, their family members will automatically receive the same visa. The draft, however, states that new foreign investors could also receive the five-year visa provided they invest in any of the national priority project or projects having a fixed capital worth more than Rs 500 million. However, the individual investor should bring in at least $ 1 million or the company has to have invested $ 5 million in such projects. With regard to a company investor, the government will issue visas to any five representatives of the company. The draft has a provision to scrap the visa as per the DoI’s recommendation in case of discrepancy in the documents submitted during a surprise check. Before a visa is issued, DoI studies the documents submitted by the investor and gives its recommendation to MoI. MoI th-en gives its recommendation to the Immi-gration Department which issues the visa. nnnn


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