KATHMANDU- The government has spent Rs 13.37 billion to combat the coronavirus pandemic. Releasing the details of COVID-19 related expenditures as of August 16, Yuba Raj Khatiwada, the government spokesperson, stated that the government is committed to being transparent about budget spending.
While the federal government spent Rs 4.81 billion on COVID-19 related responses, the remaining amount was spent by provincial and local level governments.
The government has made the details of the expenditures public amidst accusations of misuse of the public funds meant to combat COVID-19.
Earlier when the government had released only the total figure of spending, it had faced criticism and intense questioning regarding where such large amounts of funding was going towards, given its poor response to combating COVID-19.
According to the figures released by the government on Friday, provincial governments have spent Rs 1.5 billion while the total expenditures made by local governments (rural municipalities, sub metropolises and metropolises) stands at Rs 6.2 billion.
The federal government has spent Rs 1.37 billion on the Coronavirus Infection Prevention, Control and Treatment Fund.
The Ministry of Defense has spent the highest amount of money towards COVID-19 response. According to the date, it spent a total of Rs 2.37 billion. The Ministry of Health and Population’s expenditure stands at Rs 2.17 billion while the Ministry of Home Affairs has spent Rs 208.3 million.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation have spent Rs 650,000 and Rs 44.98 million in the last five months. The Ministry of Urban Development had been allocated a total of Rs 12.9 million, according to the figures.
The highest amount of expenditure has been used towards health infrastructure, where the federal government spent Rs 2.94 billion. For medicines and health related goods, the federal government has spent Rs 1.76 billion.
Human resource mobilization spending is at Rs 57.4 million. The federal government has spent Rs 46.9 million on quarantine facilities while the spending on other necessities has amounted to Rs 12.4 million.