Sup­ple­men­tary bud­get to ad­dress un­em­ploy­ment

Bhutan Times - - Home - Lhakpa Tsh­er­ing

Opposition Leader Dr. Pema Gyamt­sho ex­pressed his sup­port for the sup­ple­men­tary bud­get the government has al­lo­cated to ad­dress un­em­ploy­ment in the on­go­ing National Assem­bly ses­sion.

How­ever, he said that the bill needed to be more ex­plicit on why the sup­ple­men­tary bud­get was needed how it would be uti­lized, and what the achieve­ments of the bill would be.

The government in­tro­duced the Sup­ple­men­tary Bud­get Ap­pro­pri­a­tion Bill for the Fi­nan­cial Year 2016 and 2017 to ad­dress the deep­en­ing un­em­ploy­ment sit­u­a­tion in the coun­try.

Fi­nance Min­is­ter Nam­gay Dorji pre­sented the bill to the house on 14 Novem­ber.

Ly­onpo Nam­gay Dorji said that since un­em­ploy­ment was be­com­ing a chal­lenge to the government, the government had been work­ing to ad­dress it through many strategies.

The sup­ple­men­tary bud­get has been sourced from the in­ter­est re­ceived from the fi­nan­cial in­sti­tu­tions on ac­count of the sub­or­di­nated debt in­stru­ments un­der the Eco­nomic Stim­u­lus Plan which amount to Nu. 262.808 mil­lion.

The La­bor and Hu­man Re­source Min­is­ter Ngeema San­gay Tshempo said the government and the par­ents were deeply wor­ried about the un­em­ployed.

A num­ber of em­ploy­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties have been gen­er­ated through var­i­ous government pro­grams and the sup­ple­men­tary bud­get will fund on­go­ing government em­ploy­ment pro­grams which ex­pect to ben­e­fit around 5,780 youth.

With the in­tro­duc­tion of the bud­get, it ex­pects to help about 1,210 em­ploy­ees through Di­rect Em­ploy­ment Scheme, about 1,600 em­ploy­ees through Di­rect Em­ploy­ment Scheme (cost shar­ing) and about 1,329 em­ploy­ees through Over­seas Em­ploy­ment Scheme at the cost of Nu. 117.957 m, Nu.43.450 m and Nu.101.401 m re­spec­tively.

How­ever, Pan­bang MP Dorji Wangdi said that the na­tion still clearly re­mem­bers the present government’s prom­ises to achieve full em­ploy­ment. “Youth un­em­ploy­ment is still on the rise,” he said, “It is highly alarm­ing and un­em­ploy­ment sit­u­a­tion is reach­ing a cri­sis level.”

Ly­onchen Tsh­er­ing Tob­gay said the bill will greatly ben­e­fit the national econ­omy. He also said that an in­creas­ing num­ber of Bhutanese youth was im­pres­sively work­ing in var­i­ous sec- tors in­clud­ing con­struc­tion and abroad.

The over­seas em­ploy­ment pro­gram, MP Dorji Wangdi said, was plagued by numer­ous prob­lems. “The performance on em­ploy­ment cre­ation out­side the coun­try has been alarm­ing,” he said. How­ever, he said he fully sup­ported the sup­ple­men­tary bud­get bill.

Ly­onchen said the over­seas em­ploy­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties ex­posed the Bhutanese youth to good ex­pe­ri­ences in wellde­vel­oped economies. He said the youth em­ployed over­seas were com­pet­ing with thou­sands of work­ers. “They are re­ally work­ing hard with pride and gain­ing good ex­pe­ri­ences,” he said, adding that they will come back home to serve the coun­try with a good ex­pe­ri­ence.

Ly­onchen also said that tabling the Sup­ple­men­tary Bud­get Ap­pro­pri­a­tion Bill in the win­ter ses­sion of Par­lia­ment for the first time was a his­toric move and will strengthen the sys­tem.

The bill has been en­dorsed to be de­lib­er­ated through a show of hands by the mem­bers and it has been re­ferred to the Fi­nance Com­mit­tee for review which will present a re­port to the house on 28 Novem­ber.

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