Pre Budget Discussion in the House of Representatives has been completed in the federal parliament n 13 May, 2018. On the occasion Cde. Binda Pandey, the Member of Parliament house of representative & president of GEFONT Policy Institute took part in the discussion and recommended the labor related issues to be considered as priority issues and include in the upcoming Budget.
Prior to that, on 12th May, JTUCC Presidium Members including GEFONT President Binod Shrestha, Vice President Ramesh Badal, General Secretary Janak Chaudhary, NTUC President Khilanath Dahal, CONEP President Bishwonath Pyakurel, ANTUF President Ganesh Regmi along with Members of Parliament Binda Pandey, Bina Shrestha and Udaya Sharma had discussed on issues related to the budget. They agreed on the wage increment; social security and employment generation as topmost priority issues in upcoming Budget.
Including the recommendations from Trade Unions, Cde. Binda Pandey presented in the parliament to keep the basic aspects of decent work at the focus while government prioritizing “Development of Infrastructure & Employment Generation”. She said that “Nepali Youth are not migrating only due to lack of employment in the country but also due to hierarchical perspectives and discriminative attitudes towards the work in Nepal”; which needs to be addressed.
While emphasizing on the employment creation, Cde. Binda Pandey marked that “Decent work and dignified working class is the basis of Socialism and the foundation of Socialism is not possible until transforming social perspective & behavior towards Labor & working class is transformed.” Thus, she suggested taking it into account while preparing the Budget.
She highlighted that in the present situation- Agriculture, Construction, Hydro electricity, Tourism, Industries & Service Sectors are major sectors of employment generation and also suggested for the modernizing and commercializing of agriculture based employment. She emphasized for a plan to encourage the investment to operate the agriculture-based industries & give priority to promote & develop the agriculture sector.
Furthermore, she said “forest that covered 40% of land is not only for greenery but it should be developed as a major area of employment generation.” She further stressed to pay attention to make residential working environment while constructing big Projects.
As per the fact that women are not only half of the population but also half of the workforce, proper mobilization, participation and management of the labor force is important. Labor force is the basis of prosperity and thus she suggested that upcoming budget must have target for equal participation of women in male dominated sectors as well rather than just focusing on conventional work. In addition she recommended to develop woman focused plan including newly developed Service sectors, Agriculture, Forest, Tourism and Science & Technology.
Cde. Binda proposed that Budget must guarantee informal sectors' workers to be covered by new Labour Law and New Social Security Act.
Cde. Pandey further recommended to put the various labour issues to insure good governance like- labour audit system, salary and other payment through banking system, anti-discriminated wage & benefit, progressive tax system, categorising the contractor company based on providing direct employment, incentives in the remittances received through the Banking channel etc. as priority issues while developing Budget.
Cde. Binda said that prosperous Nepal is not possible without utilizing youth's strength and energy within the Country. Therefore, she put forward that state should set the goal within 5 years time that Foreign Employment should be converted as an option of the employment, skill development opportunity must be created for every person of employable age and state should have confident to say that we will be allowing only for skilled workers to go for foreign employment.
She further added “ State Policy & Budget must guarantee the way to build the Socialism, for which Budget must have specific target for 5 years with measurable indicators of the achievements so that citizen can observed the actual transformation."
She expressed that excluded gender, class and communities must be addressed by the Budget in differently with targeting them to mainstream.
She recommended that the Budget must address with priority for proper utilisations of remittances, Skill, Technology and Experience of hundreds of thousand migrant workers for the development of the country.
Finally, the budget should be sensitive in regard to mainstream gender, class, regions and marginalized communities, rather neutral on these issues.