Sunday, 19th May, 2019

FNCCI prez candidates reveal where they stand on issues

With three days to go for the election of a new executive committee of the Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry ( FNCCI ), presidential candidates Bhaskar Raj Rajkarnikar and Pradeep Jung Pandey have stressed the need for unity to achieve the common agendas and goals of the private sector.

Speaking at a caucus organised by the Society of Economic Journalists of Nepal (SEJON) on Tuesday, the two contenders said they were more committed to serving the FNCCI than winning the top post.

Stating that the private sector was going through difficult times, Rajkarnikar said his candidacy was for strengthening the sector at this critical juncture. Apart from strengthening the private sector, there is a need to correct the FNCCI besides changing the government’s perception towards the private sector, he said. “The leadership of the FNCCI should not come into an argument,” said Rajkarnikar. “Whether I win or lose, it will not stop me from making contributions to the FNCCI .” Similarly, Pandey stressed the need to make the FNCCI more participatory in government policies related to the private sector. “There is a need to increase the acceptance of the FNCCI . For this, the business community needs unity which is the main agenda of my candidacy,” Pandey said.

Both the challengers said they would accept the outcome of the democratic practice. While Rajkarnikar argued that he should get the opportunity to lead the apex body of the country’s private sector as he was its current senior vice-president, Pandey countered that FNCCI senior vice-presidents had pulled out of the race for the top post to maintain unity and harmony in the institution.

Rajkarnikar and Pandey were poles apart on the issue of allowing Nepalis to invest abroad. The senior vice-president was against allowing Nepalis to invest abroad immediately. “After a decade-long conflict and six years of instability, Nepal needs capital for its development,” said Rajkarnikar.

However, Pandey said that he was for allowing investment abroad in areas where potential investors have expertise. “There is a need to create an environment to allow Nepalis to invest abroad through legal means and bring back the dividends of the investments to the home country,” said Pandey.

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