KATHMANDU, Nov 9: The government has once again called on industries to submit applications to get relief package under the Sick Industries Relief Program (SIRP). The annoucement was made at a time when the government is yet to process applications of 30 firms that have already applied to get the status of ´sick industry´.
"We have opened up the application process for industries to register themselves if they want relief package from the government under SIRP," Surya Kant Jha, under secretary at the Ministry of Industry (MoI), said.
The MoI which is entrusted to carry out the program to rehabilitate sick industries has formally issued the new notice aiming to receive applications from industries that want to be listed as ´sick´. "We have reissued the notice after we got some complaints that the industries which were actually sick couldn´t apply last time when government had called for applications," Jha said.
The government has again opened up the process of registering applications for industries which think they deserve to get relief package from the government´s program to revive sick industries. "The evaluation process of firms which have already applied will keep going," Jha said
However, the ministry responsible to finish the task of identifying actual sick industries has not been able complete cross verification of the information that the firms have submitted in almost one year period. "The ministry hasn´t finish assessing the applications of the firms which already have applied," Jha said. "However, we have completed field study of eight firms out of total 30 that have applied."
According to Jha, the industries which could get the government´s relief package can apply till the end of this month (November). "The firms have to demonstrate sufficient reasons why they became sick despite the well management of resources," Jha said.
The government through a recommendation report that was prepared last year under the leadership of Dipendra Bahadur Kshetry, vice-chairperson of National Planning Commission (NPC) has identified slew of relief measures for sick industries like tax waiver, extension of loan repayment date, loan restructuring and interest amount waiver among others.
Meanwhile, entrepreneurs who are seeking relief from the government to revive the situation of their industries have expressed low confidence due to unresponsive mechanism in the bureaucracy.
"It´s been more than a year that we have not got any response from the government on whether we fall under government´s criteria to get relief package or not, let alone getting anything tangible," an entrepreneur said in condition of anonymity since he has been looking for relief from the government.