In separate agreements worth $50 million each, the government of Nepal and the World Bank signed today to provide additional funding to support the implementation of the governmentR17;s flagship School Sector Development Program in the education sector and public management reforms in the health sector.
The agreements were signed by Madhu Kumar Marasini, Finance Secretary of the Government of Nepal, on behalf of the government, and Mr. Faris Hadad-Zervos, Country Director of the World Bank for the Maldives, Nepal, and Sri Lanka.
Deputy Finance Secretary Madhu Kumar Marasini stated, “Strengthening NepalR17;s education and health systems is a crucial component of rebuilding better after the pandemic.” In addition to the School Sector Development Program, the reform agenda championed by the Nepal Health Sector Program for Results is critical to Nepal’s vision of an efficient, effective, transparent, and accountable health system. Together, they serve as a catalyst for improved human capital development, allowing Nepal to compete strongly post-COVID.
With the Additional Financing to the School Sector Development Program, we will be able to lower dropout rates and alleviate learning losses by supporting targeted scholarships for low-income students, pro-science scholarships, and catch-up programmes. Both assessment and data systems will be established as the foundation for the next school sector successor programme. It will also contribute to the creation of fiscal space that will be used to bridge a funding deficit in the governmentR17;s flagship programme.
The Additional Financing for Nepal Health Sector Management Reform Program for Results would supplement the existing Nepal Health Sector Management Reform Program for Results, which is being executed under the supervision of the Ministry of Health and Population, by providing additional funding. It is the driving force behind reforms in public procurement, financial management, data for decision-making, and citizen involvement in the health sector, all of which are aimed at increasing accountability.
In a statement, Faris Hadad-Zervos, Country Director for the Maldives, Nepal, and Sri Lanka at the World Bank, said: “These engagements contribute to NepalR17;s green, resilient, and inclusive development by making the country’s education and health systems more inclusive and resilient to future shocks, which will in turn help to accelerate human capital development.” The World Bank is a leading international development organisation. The additional funding, I believe, will help Nepal get closer to its objective of universal health coverage, while also ensuring fair access to education and improving the quality of education and learning outcomes for children and young people in Nepal.