Foreign direct investment (FDI) pledge increased by only a meager 0.9 per cent in last fiscal year 2013-14, though the number of foreign investment projects declined by 3.8 per cent.

Department of Industry approved some 305 joint venture projects with foreign direct investment commitment worth Rs 20.10 billion in the last fiscal year, the central bank data revealed, adding that a fiscal year ago in 2012-13, the department had approved some 317 joint venture projects with foreign investment commitment worth Rs 19.94 billion.

Out of 305 projects approved in the review year, 106 were service related, followed by 87 tourism-related, 47 agriculture and forestry-related, 44 manufacturing-related, 11 mineral-related and 10 energy-related projects, it added. “In the previous fiscal year, out of total approved projects, 89 each were service and tourism related followed by 84 manufacturing related, 43 agriculture and forestry-related, six energy-related, five mineral-related and one construction-related project.

In the last fiscal year 2013-14, both the number and total investment amount on agriculture and forestry and energy-related projects increased whereas total amount of investment on manufacturing, service, mining and tourism-related projects witnessed a sharp decline.

“Of the total 305 approved projects, China ranks first with 119 foreign investment projects, followed by USA with 28, India (22), South Korea (22), Japan (15) and UK (12) as well as 87 from other countries,” it added.

Chinese are overtaking Indians in terms of foreign direct investment in Nepal, according to the central bank data.

The total projects getting approval last fiscal year promised 11,732 new jobs. “With 119 projects worth Rs 7.31 billion, Chinese investment commitment is expected to create 4,618 employment, whereas  with 22 projects worth Rs 6.54 billion Indian investment commitment is expected to generate 2,108 employment in the country.

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