Education receives largest foreign aid in FY 2015/16

By Modnath Dhakal

Kathmandu, Jan. 13:Surpassing the energy and local development, education has become the sector to receive the largest foreign aid disbursement during fiscal year 2016/17.
Of the total Official Development Assistance (ODA) worth US$ 1.39 billion, about US$ 127.24 millionwas distributed to the education sector, up by 14 per cent than in FY 2015/16, said the latest Development Cooperation Report published by the Ministry of Finance (MoF).
US$ 111.55 million aid was mobilised for education in FY 2015/16, and it was the third largest recipient following energy and local development with $150.58 million and $119.15 million, respectively.
“The education sector dominated other sectors in terms of the disbursement volume due to the significant amount of ODA disbursed for the school reconstruction sector,” said the MoF.
According to the National Reconstruction Authority (NRA), reconstruction of schools damaged in the devastating Gorkha Earthquake 2015 is moving smoothly.
Altogether 7,553 buildings of educational institutions were damaged in the quake. By the third week of December, altogether 2,741 school buildings were reconstructed and 1,004 are under construction.
In terms of foreign aid disbursement, local development, housing, drinking water and policy and strategic sectors are among the top five recipients along with education.
Local development received $123 million, housing $112.17 million, drinking water $110.09 million and policy sector got $101.75 million in FY 2016/17.
According to the ministry, the housing sector saw a three-fold increase in disbursement, driven primarily by the foreign aid-funded Earthquake Housing Reconstruction Project, which disbursed more than US$ 106 million.
“With significant disbursement to the Kathmandu Valley Water Supply Improvement Project (US$ 38 million) and the Melamchi Drinking Water Project (US$ 29 million), there was nearly a three-fold increase in disbursement in the drinking water sector compared to the previous fiscal year,” reads the report.
Health was the fourth largest sector in FY 2015/16 with $103.4 million distribution, but it was pushed to sixth position last year with $89.58 million.
Other major areas of foreign aid disbursement are road transportation, urban development, energy and peace and reconstruction.
The report showed that foreign aid to policy and strategic increased by 4990 per cent, from $2 million in FY 2015/16 to $101.75 million.
Similarly, aid to drinking water, housing and urban development has increased by 160 per cent, 225 per cent and 100 per cent respectively. But foreign aid to environment, science and technology has gone down drastically by 47 per cent.

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